Town Meeting in Vermont
March 01, 2010
Town Meeting, held the first Tuesday in March, is an annual tradition in Vermont. Residents gather in town halls and school gymnasiums around the state to vote on local budgets, debate community issues, and elect town officials.
Attendance at Town Meeting has unfortunately been on the decline for the past 40 years. According to University of Vermont Professor Frank Bryan, a typical meeting draws only about 20 percent of voters, but small towns tend to have higher turnouts.
Town Meeting has been an important part of Vermont’s history and identity for more than 200 years. The first Town Meeting was held in Bennington in 1762, several years before Vermont became the 14th state.
Interesting and controversial topics are part of the mix at Town Meeting, and this year will be no exception. For Town Meeting coverage, visit Vermont Public Radio at www.vpr.net.