If the town meeting is not able to pass a budget by the end of the fiscal year on June 30, the town of Great Barrington, like hundreds of other small municipalities in the state with a town-meeting form of government, has a problem.
The Great Barrington Selectboard, Cutting Edge AV Inc. in Lee and Monument Mountain Regional High School staff are busy this week arranging for an outdoor sound system and an FM radio broadcast of the meeting, which voters can follow in their cars.
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles will be implementing further extensions to the renewal timelines for expiring motor vehicle inspection stickers, passenger plate registrations, professional credentials, and driver’s licenses and learner’s permits.
Other board members said it was clear to them after that first public hearing that the Foster’s lot would be closed to the public if the company was denied the right to build the new lot for its tenants.
Town moderator Michael Wise said he thought it was important that the budget be passed by Tuesday, June 30, even if the other items of the annual town meeting warrant were pushed aside until restrictions on large gatherings were lifted.
“The only way we as a community can flatten this curve and prevent further spread of the COVID-19 virus is to isolate as much as possible and respect the social distancing guidelines being shared widely,” added selectboard Chairman Steve Bannon.
In Great Barrington, town officials put out a statement yesterday, and at Monday’s selectboard meeting, town health agent Rebecca Jurczyk briefed officials on measures the town is taking to prepare for the virus.
The only way for the item calling for withdrawal to be placed on the warrant is for the selectmen to put it there, even though they were the ones who signed the settlement on behalf of the town in the first place.
The operating total does not include the town’s contribution toward the annual budget of the Berkshire Hills Regional School District, the school committee of which has yet to adopt its own budget, though its deliberations started Thursday night.
When selectboard Chair Steve Bannon opened the floor to comments from the audience, most seemed to agree that, in addition to placing restrictions on the stores, the larger question remains about what kind of image the tourism-minded town wants to project.
The proposal, first made public in September, has alarmed residents of the neighborhood, whose concerns range from noise and odors to the effect of the Fulcrum project on property values and the aforementioned impact on the water supply.