Here’s what Rochester residents will vote on at Town Meeting

Oct 12, 2021

ROCHESTER — On Monday, Rochester Special Town Meeting voters will face decisions on dog licenses, a new liquor license, solar power at the elementary school, and the name of what is now the Board of Selectmen.

All registered voters in Rochester are eligible to participate in the town’s Special Town Meeting on Oct. 18.

A full copy of the warrant is attached to this article. 

Regional agreement
After 35 years, the Tri-Town is finally set to update the regional agreement that governs Old Rochester Regional Junior High and High School.

The most significant changes to the agreement include the creation of a capital stabilization fund that would help pay for routine maintenance and a change to the way the schools are funded that will make each town’s annual contribution more consistent.

The new agreement would also change the start and end dates of school committee terms to better line up with the school year.

Liquor license
If voters approve the measure, Rochester will petition the state for an additional liquor license for a carry-out retail store to be used at the to-come Rochester Crossroads development.

Shortened dog licensing period
An article submitted by the Rochester town clerk would shorten the registration period for dogs from six months to three, meaning that residents would need to purchase dog licenses by March 31 each year to avoid late fees.

Rochester Memorial solar
Article 11 of the warrant asks voters to decide whether to contract with an outside company to construct and maintain a canopy of solar panels over town-owned parking lots at the Rochester Memorial School.

Select Board
Rochester is one of the only towns in the area which still refers to its executive council as the Board of Selectmen. At the Special Town Meeting next week voters will decide whether to change it to Select Board.

Miscellaneous expenses
Several relatively small miscellaneous expenses will also appear before voters at the meeting including: $13,000 for equipment at the Assessors office (split between two articles), $10,000 for consulting services for the Board of Selectmen, and an additional $10,000 to supplement a utility truck with plow that was purchased after being accepted at a previous Town Meeting.