Selectboard member will vote 'no' on mayor question

BRATTLEBORO — The current system of an elected Selectboard comprised of five town residents, a professional town manager who runs daily municipal operations, and Representative Town Meeting provides for a great deal of public involvement and professionalism. Why change that?

Our town manager is doing a wonderful job! What happens to him with a mayor?

A mayoral system creates more executive power. Why would this be good for Brattleboro?

A mayor who would also be expected to run the town would make this formerly politically neutral position into something ideological and build in instability. Why would this make things better?

A mayor would most likely cost the town more than the current Selectboard and town manager system. Is that what the taxpayers want?

A mayor would be more vulnerable to influence from powerful interest groups.

The question provides no guidance whatsoever on what type of mayoral system. Would the mayor be both the political and administrative head of town government, or would we have a mayor and a town (city?) manager? Would we have a city council? How many people would be on that council? What would it take for the council to be able to override a mayoral veto? How long would the mayor be elected for? Would there be term limits? What would the mayor's salary be?

The list goes on.

The question distracts from our major challenges as a municipality.

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