To All Town Boards, Committees and Commissions:
On June 16, 2021, Governor Baker signed into law Chapter 20 of the Acts of 2021 (the “Act”), which, among other things, re-instated the ability of public bodies to conduct their meetings remotely through April 1, 2022.
Section 20 of the Act continues the rules and requirements set forth in Governor Baker’s March 12, 2020 Executive Order which suspended certain requirements of the Open Meeting Law. Under Section 20, public bodies may decide whether to hold their meetings remotely or in person. However, both Town Council President Matthew Levesque and Town Manager Mark Ells strongly encourage all Town boards, committees and commissions to conduct their meetings entirely remotely in order to facilitate greater public access to those meetings. Until such time as the Town is able to provide the necessary technological and staff support to ensure that hybrid meetings – meetings that allow both in person and remote participation – can be conducted effectively and in full compliance with the Open Meeting Law, meetings should be entirely in person or entirely remote. The Town expects to provide further guidance on hybrid meetings on or before September 1st.