Category Archives: Voter Information

Town Election Update – More Candidates Still Needed

Town Election 2017 Word Cloud

Considering running for local office, but don’t know where to begin?

To become a candidate a person must either obtain and submit nomination papers by securing the signatures of 50 Hopkinton registered voters by Monday, March 27; or a person may qualify by being the top vote-getter in one of the town political party caucuses.  The Democratic caucus is Friday, April 7 at 6:30pm in Town Hall. The date of the Republican Caucus is also Friday, April 7 in Town Hall. Nomination signature papers are available from the Town Clerk’s office in Town Hall.

Offices on the May 15 Ballot

Board of Assessors, 3 Years, 1 Seat
Board of Assessors, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Board of Health, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • Elizabeth Whittemore, Democrat

Board of Health, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidate yet

Board of Library Trustees, 3 Years, 2 Seats

  • Stanley D Pulnik, Unenrolled (incumbent)
  • 2nd candidate needed

Board of Library Trustees, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • Jessica King, Democrat

Board of Selectmen, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • John M Coutinho, Republican (incumbent)

Cemetery Commissioners, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • Claire Wright, Republican (incumbent)

Commissioners of Trust Funds, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Constable, 3 Years, 1 Seat
Constable, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Hopkinton Housing Authority, 5 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Parks and Recreation Commission, 3 Years, 2 Seats – Contested Race

  • Christina Anderson, Unenrolled
  • Laura Hanson, Democrat (incumbent)
  • Amy Markovich, Republican (incumbent)

Planning Board, 5 Years, 2 Seats

  • Amy Ritterbusch, Democrat
  • Kenneth Weismantel, Republican (incumbent)

Planning Board, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Planning Board, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • Irfan Nasrullah, Democrat

School Committee, 3 Years, 2 Seats

  • Jennifer Devlin, Democrat
  • Meenakshi Bharath, Unenrolled

Town Meeting Warrant Open – Citizen’s Petitions due by 3/1

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Have an idea or want to change something, but don’t know how to go about it? See the Guide for Citizen Petitioners (PDF) or view our slide show on Google Drive.

The 2017 Annual Town Meeting will commence on Monday, May 1, 2017. Please be advised that articles may be submitted to the Board of Selectmen/Town Manager’s office. Per the Town Charter, the warrant will close on March 1, 2017. Draft article language should be submitted to the Selectmen/Town Manager’s office on paper or via email to mglynn@hopkintonma.gov. Petition papers may be obtained and submitted at the Town Clerk’s office during normal business hours.

Town Election Candidates Needed

Town Election 2017 Word Cloud

Considering running for local office, but don’t know where to begin?

To become a candidate a person must either obtain and submit nomination papers by securing the signatures of 50 Hopkinton registered voters by Monday, March 27; or a person may qualify by being the top vote-getter in one of the town political party caucuses.  The Democratic caucus is Friday, April 7 at 6:30pm in Town Hall. The date of the Republican Caucus has not yet been announced. Nomination signature papers are available from the Town Clerk’s office in Town Hall.

Offices on the May 15 Ballot

Board of Assessors, 3 Years, 1 Seat
Board of Assessors, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Board of Health, 3 Years, 1 Seat
Board of Health, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Board of Library Trustees, 3 Years, 2 Seats

  • Stanley D Pulnik, Unenrolled (incumbent)
  • 2nd candidate needed

Board of Library Trustees, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Board of Selectmen, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • John M Coutinho, Republican (incumbent)

Cemetery Commissioners, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • Claire Wright, Republican (incumbent)

Commissioners of Trust Funds, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Constable, 3 Years, 1 Seat
Constable, 1 Year, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Hopkinton Housing Authority, 5 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Parks and Recreation Commission, 3 Years, 2 Seats – Contested Race

  • Christina Anderson, Unenrolled
  • Laura Hanson, Democrat (incumbent)
  • Amy Markovich, Republican (incumbent)

School Committee, 3 Years, 2 Seats

  • Jennifer Devlin, Democrat
  • 2nd candidate needed

Planning Board, 5 Years, 2 Seats

  • Amy Ritterbusch, Democrat
  • 2nd candidate needed

Planning Board, 3 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Planning Board, 1 Years, 1 Seat

  • No candidates yet

Candidate Endorsement Policy

Town Election 2017 Word Cloud

As we head into election season, eHop would like to remind our readers of our candidate endorsement policy:

The primary mission of eHop is community education on funding and policy issues pertaining to the Town of Hopkinton, Massachusetts including the Hopkinton Public Schools. Hence, eHop will strive to provide voters with accurate and detailed information on candidates running for state and local office, with a focus on each candidate’s position on both town and school-related issues.

It is eHop policy not to endorse candidates for public office. eHop board members are at liberty, however, to endorse candidates independently.

When eHop collects information from candidates for voter education purposes, eHop may add editorial comments to clarify candidate claims or statements that eHop deems to be deceptive or misleading, or that require further explanation.

On our Blog/Website:

Any eHop Board Member running for elected office in a contested race will not write or edit any blogs regarding the office for which they are running, including but not limited to our annual Candidate Q&A.

On Facebook:

In addition, due to eHop policy not to endorse candidates for public office, any endorsements for specific candidates will be deleted from our Facebook page.

Candidates are welcome to email a candidate statement or a link to their campaign website, which we will be happy to post to our website along with info about all the other candidates. Please send to amyritterbusch@ehop01748.org.

Read our full policies and guidelines…

Special Town Meeting Results Day 2 (unofficial)

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Article 1: Periodic Charter Review: Report and Recommendations – PASSED as amended below

  • Amendment: June Harris of the Board of Library Trustees made a motion to amend Section 4-5c “Library Director – The Town Manager shall annually set goals for the Library Director with input from the Board of Library Trustees.” PASSED on 1/30/17
  • Amendment: Carly Grant made a motion to add welcoming and inclusivity language to the preamble. “The Town of Hopkinton welcomes residents of all races, ethnicities, religions, abilities, gender identifications, and sexual orientations; the Town of Hopkinton, further, is committed to providing a climate of safety and acceptance to all residents. The Town of Hopkinton will actively address and resist acts of discrimination, bullying, or intimidation.” PASSED on 1/30/17
  • Amendment: Christine Dietz made a motion to amend the proposed charter which would keep the Town Clerk elected, rather than appointed by the Board of Selectmen. PASSED on 1/30/17
  • Amendment: Phil Cohen, a member of the Board of Health, made a motion to allow boards and committees with appointing authority to fix the compensation of their appointees. PASSED on 1/30/17
  • Amendment: Frank D’Urso made a motion to make the Town Treasurer an elected position. (The Town Attorney helped to draft the wording before Town Meeting Day 2.) FAILED
  • Amendment: Jim Ciriello made a motion to have a requirement that the Town Manager be a resident of Hopkinton, within 6 months of appointment to the position. (The Town Attorney helped to draft the wording before Town Meeting Day 2.) FAILED
  • Amendment: Frank D’Urso made a motion to create an elected position of Ombudsman. FAILED

Article 2: School Building Project (addition of 4 classrooms to the school building project currently underway) – An additional $1.5 Million – PASSED Unanimously

Article 3: Acquisition of Property at 61 Main Street for Downtown Corridor Realignment – PASSED 96 to 22 on 1/30/17

Article 4: Authority to Negotiate Solar Agreements – PASSED on 1/30/17

Meeting adjourned at about 8:55 PM

Special Town Meeting Results Day 1 (unofficial)

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Motion to defer action on article 2 (School Building Project) until 7:00 PM on day 2, Tuesday, January 31 – PASSED 107 – 42

Article 1: Periodic Charter Review: Report and Recommendations – DEFERRED

  • Amendment: June Harris of the Board of Library Trustees made a motion to amend Section 4-5c “Library Director – The Town Manager shall annually set goals for the Library Director with input from the Board of Library Trustees.” PASSED
  • Amendment: Carly Grant made a motion to add welcoming and inclusivity language to the preamble. “The Town of Hopkinton welcomes residents of all races, ethnicities, religions, abilities, gender identifications, and sexual orientations; the Town of Hopkinton, further, is committed to providing a climate of safety and acceptance to all residents. The Town of Hopkinton will actively address and resist acts of discrimination, bullying, or intimidation.” PASSED unanimously
  • Amendment: Christine Dietz made a motion to amend the proposed charter which would keep the Town Clerk elected, rather than appointed by the Board of Selectmen. PASSED
  • Amendment: Phil Cohen, a member of the Board of Health, made a motion to allow boards and committees with appointing authority to fix the compensation of their appointees. PASSED
  • Amendment: Frank D’Urso made a motion to make the Town Treasurer an elected position. – The Town Attorney needed time to draft the wording that would accomplish what Mr D’Urso intended. So a motion was made to defer voting on this amendment until Tuesday after article 2. DEFERRED This means that the final voting on the Town Charter will be delayed until Tuesday.
  • Amendment: Jim Ciriello made a motion to have provision in the charter to have a residency requirement for the Town Manager.  The Town Moderator asked that Mr Ciriello work on the wording with the Town Attorney and bring his amendment back tomorrow. DEFERRED

Article 2: School Building Project (addition of 4 classrooms to the school building project currently underway) – An additional $1.5 Million – DEFERRED until 1/31/17

Article 3: Acquisition of Property at 61 Main Street for Downtown Corridor Realignment – PASSED 96 to 22

Article 4: Authority to Negotiate Solar Agreements – PASSED

Meeting ended at 10:15 PM, to continue at 7:00 PM on Tuesday, January 31 at Hopkinton Middle School, when articles that have been deferred with be discussed, starting first with article 2. Keep an eye on the Town Twitter for weather cancellations.

Special Town Meeting Begins Monday at 7:00pm

Hopkinton Town Clerk

Hopkinton Special Town Meeting Day 1
Monday, January 30 at 7:00-11:00pm
Middle School Auditorium
There are 4 articles to vote on the warrant. Town meeting will repeat the following evenings 7:00-11:00pm until all the articles are voted. We expect Special Town Meeting to last at least 2 evenings. The first motion of the evening is expected to be a vote to defer action on article 2 (new school) until 7:00 PM on day 2 (Tuesday 1/31/17), but we cannot be sure if the motion will pass. Stay tuned.

As usual eHop will be covering Town Meeting live on social media to let you know the results of each vote as it happens. Follow us @eHop01748 and look for the hashtag #HopSTM17

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Useful Documents:


List of Articles with Links & Details:

Hopkinton Town Clerk

Article 1: Periodic Charter Review: Report and Recommendations

To hear the Report of the Charter Review Committee, submitted pursuant to Section 7-6 of the Town’s Home Rule Charter, and to see if the Town will vote to adopt the recommendations of the Charter Review Committee as set forth in a proposed Charter. Three key changes being recommended:


Addition of Classrooms to New School
Article 2: School Building Project (addition)

Article 2: School Building Project (addition of 4 classrooms to the school building project currently underway) – An additional $1.5 Million


61 Main Street Downtown Corridor
Article 3: Acquisition of Property at 61 Main Street for Downtown Corridor Realignment

Article 3: Acquisition of Property at 61 Main Street for Downtown Corridor Realignment

To see if the Town will vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to acquire, by gift, purchase, or eminent domain, a fee or other interest in all or any portion of the property located at 61 Main Street and designated on the Assessors Map as U16-250-0, said land to be used for purposes of realigning the intersection of Main Street (Route 135) and Cedar/Grove Street (Route 85) in order to improve the flow of traffic on Main Street and enhance public safety.


Solar Panels

Article 4: Authority to Negotiate Solar Agreements

To see if the Town will vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to negotiate payment in lieu of tax (PILOT) agreements for solar energy projects in the Town of Hopkinton in accordance with Section 38H of Chapter 59 of the Massachusetts General Laws.

Town Meeting 101

Town Meeting 101 Photo Essay (2 min. video)
You do not need to bring anything to Town Meeting. However, many people find that bringing a notebook and pen or pencil is helpful to make notes during the discussions. No food or drink is allowed in the Middle School Auditorium. There is a drinking fountain outside the auditorium. Many people also find that something to occupy one’s hands is helpful. If you are a knitter, for example, bring a small project. There are plenty of padded stationary folding auditorium style chairs, which are reasonably comfortable. But remember you’ll be there for a long time, so wear comfortable clothes.

Town Meeting begins at 7:00 PM in the Middle School Auditorium. Enter by Grove Street and please allow time to park and walk to the building. As you enter the Middle School, head to the left to the cafeteria to sign in. To actually vote in the auditorium, you must be a Hopkinton resident registered to vote and you must sign in at the voter table. Your name will be checked off and you’ll be given a small piece of paper marked “Voter Pass.” Hold on to this slip of paper; you will need it when it is time for the votes to be counted! You’ll see a table of handouts and fact sheets regarding all the proposed articles to be voted on from the town boards and committees. There is some terrific information here that may answer many of your questions. Listening devices for the hearing impaired will be available, please ask when you check in.

Assistive Listening Device

You do not have to be present for the entire town meeting to vote, though the more that participate in whole, the more balanced the democratic process. A quorum of 100 people is required to open the meeting. There is no set time to check in. The meeting will be broadcast live via HCAM TV (Comcast 8/Verizon 30/Streaming live at www.hcam.tv), but you MUST be present to vote. You just need to check in prior to the vote, whenever you arrive. You only have to check in once, and you can come and go from the auditorium as you please. You can text (with phone switched to silent mode) from within the auditorium, although there is minimal cell coverage. Step outside to make a phone call.

The Board of Selectmen (Brian Herr, Chair) presides over the meeting, which is facilitated by the Town Moderator (Thomas Garabedian) and recorded by the Town Clerk (Connor Degan). The format of the meeting itself follows procedures set out in the Town Bylaws, page 35-37 (similar to Robert’s Rules of Order). Articles are presented, motions made, discussions ensue. Sometimes it can be a little confusing if an amendment comes up, so keep your ears open. Listen carefully — and you’ll learn a lot. There are 4 articles on the warrant (agenda) for Hopkinton’s Special Town Meeting on January 30, 2017.

The committee or board presenting each article may make a brief presentation before each article. The Town Moderator, Thomas Garabedian, will facilitate a question and answer period for registered residents. If you choose to ask a question or comment on an article, step up to one of the microphones located in the auditorium aisles. Wait for the moderator, to recognize you, then state your name and address, and keep your comments brief, civil, and to the point. The comment, question and answer period will end when either #1 the moderator sees that no one else is waiting at the microphone to speak or #2 a voter comes to the microphone, is recognized by the moderator, and says “I move the question” or “I call the question.” The motion to end debate must then be seconded and then adopted by a ⅔ vote.

As for the actual voting, most votes start as a voice vote. The moderator asks all in favor and all opposed. If the voice vote sounds close, it will go to a standing count. The moderator will ask all in favor to stand up. Now is the time to get out that piece of paper! Hold out your Voter Pass and remain standing until the counters for your section have indicated that your vote has been recorded.

Although you can leave at any time, we recommend you do NOT leave until the meeting is officially adjourned. Someone may ask for a recount, and if a large group has already left, the outcome could be different, especially if the original vote was close. If you have any other questions about Town Meeting, please ask!

Citizen’s Guide to Town Meetings from the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts