Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Is It Me?

This morning I received five emails from the town, each with a Board of Selectman's Meeting minutes attached.  I signed up for this service long ago.

The minutes I received today were from April 12, April 29, May 2, May 9, and May 16.

Today is August 9th.

Time for a lesson.

The purpose of meeting minutes is two fold.  1)  To record for posterity to goings on inside a particular group, and 2) to inform those that were unable to attend the meeting of those goings on in a timely fashion.  This is usually done before the next meeting has begun in order to provide for feedback with old business.  The town is getting it half right.

Recording, and dispersing meeting minutes, like so many other things we make difficult in our lives, is a pretty simple process.  Take notes, type notes, submit minutes.  If one is unable to do this due to other duties, or undo editing from other sources, then something is wrong.

120 days from meeting to dispersal of the minutes.

(sigh)  Maybe it's me, and I just expect too much.


  1. I would like hear the reasoning behind this. 120 days for meeting minutes to be made available is inexcusable. The chairman should address this. I am sure he will have an answer.

  2. It's not just the BOS. If you check the town's web page and search out minutes of other boards and committees you'll find that we've often been left out, and continue to be so.

  3. Municipal board meeting minutes form the basis of the official record of the board or committee and as such should not be distributed to non-board members until the board has approved them in open meeting. Of course they should be reviewed at the very next meeting, but often times they'll get tabled if time is needed for discussion on other matters. For a monthly board normal turn around should be about six weeks. For a weekly board it should be shorter. The actual distribution might get held because the secretary or clerk has other work that comes first.

  4. 120 days is too long. No secretary is that busy unless she is working in an unlit cave without a pencil. The chairman of the board must be responsible in releasing minutes of the meetings in a timely fashion. Approval of minutes does not take 120 days.

  5. I have to agree with you. 120 days is much too long, but I understand Jim, too. one or two weeks would be best. Thank you.


Anonymous comments not accepted, and will be rejected. Please use your full name. Choose "Name / URL" and enter your name, and your name ONLY. Leave "URL" blank.