Bristol Village Board rejects referendum on board size

Bristol residents will not be voting in a referendum on the size of  the Village Board after action taken by the Village Board Monday.

The board voted 4 to 2 to not take action on a petition asking for a referendum on the question of restoring the number of village trustees to six. Trustee Bill Glembocki and President Mike Farrell voted against the motion.

A petition with 171 signatures was submitted to the board asking for the referendum. The petition was spearheaded by former village President Richard Gossling.

Trustee John McCabe, who made the motion not to hold the referendum and who campaigned on decreasing the size of the board in the last board election, said the smaller board will save the village money.

“We want to keep it at four …'” McCabe said, “save the taxpayers some money.”

Trustee Carolyn Owens said she felt the board functioned fine with five total members — as it had when it was a town.

“The town-village has been run by a five member board for 30 years,” Owens said.

Later she questioned whether the petition had any standing because signatures had not been certified.  Trustee Ruth Atwood said she was sure many of the people who signed the petition would not have if they knew the other side of the issue.

Glembocki defended the call for a referendum. He said he had helped circulate the petition and gather signatures. He called the drive to decrease the size of the board a power grab by a block of trustees, though he did not name names.

Farrell criticized the move to not hold the referendum as well, saying trustees in favor of McCabe’s motion were not responding to a sizable number of citizens.

“By making a motion to ignore them, you’ll need to be accountable to them,” Farrell said.

Trustee Colleen Fisch did not comment on the issue during debate.

The board first voted in April to decrease the size of the board over the next two elections and by not filling a vacant seat.


Comments are closed.

  • Follow us on

  • Archives