Mattapoisett Selectmen delay election, Town Meeting

May 5, 2020

MATTAPOISETT — The Annual Town Election and Annual Town Meeting will be held in June to hopefully give Selectmen candidates more time to campaign with current coronavirus restrictions.

At a May 5 virtual meeting, Selectmen set the election date for June 16 and Town Meeting for June 29.

Town Clerk Catherine Heuberger told Selectmen she would be able to hold an election on May 19. However, Selectman candidate John DeCosta called into the meeting to request more time, since the current election date would give him no time to campaign if the state reopens on May 18. 

Town Administrator Michael Lorenco said Selectmen should leave about two weeks after the election to plan with the new Selectman how to do Town Meeting. 

“I don’t see anytime soon that we can have a Town meeting as we know it, where we all get in a room and discuss things,” Selectman Paul Silva said. The board discussed holding the meeting outside in a stadium and other ideas, but made no decisions.  They will keep the warrant to the most important articles. 

As they have in previous meetings, Selectmen reiterated that the Police Department, Harbormaster and other officials are monitoring crowds at popular spots. 

“Overall people are doing really well. People are taking some level of social responsibility,” said Selectman Jordan Collyer, adding “A lot of people walking still have masks on, especially just recreating in town.”  

However, Silva said he has “never received as many discussions or calls as he has from individuals concerned about this issue.” He wanted to emphasize that he favors taking action to close locations or fine residents if needed. 

Selectmen mentioned they will likely open Town Hall, then the Mattapoisett Free Public Library then the Council on Aging, however they did not finalize those plans.