Hoping to crack down on absenteeism during Town Meeting, resident James Hugh Powers has filed a citizenís petition to form a committee to study the organization and functions of the 240-member elected body.
Powers, who has served on Town Meeting since 1951, said heís concerned that voters arenít being represented fairly when Town Meeting members play hooky. Itís not uncommon for 20 to 30 members to be absent on a given night during the month-long legislative sessions.
Powers, 83, said younger, upwardly mobile families may feel less connected to Needham. He said heís even heard that members have stayed home to watch the meetings on cable television.
Powers first proposed creating a study committee in 2005 and Town Meeting successfully adopted the petition, but the Town Moderator has never appointed any members, Powers said. He hopes that this year, by filing another petition, volunteers will step up to the plate.
-Ė Lauren K. Meade
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