The Town Meeting serves as the Town's legislative body under the provisions of Chapter 553 of the Acts of 1953 (PDF), which is better known as the Representative Town Meeting Act. The Town Meeting is responsible for taking all action normally associated with that of a legislative body in the American system of democracy.
Types of Meetings
The Representative Town meeting consists of 240 elected town meeting members distributed fairly evenly among the 10 precincts based on population.
Special Town Meetings are generally called by the Selectmen. Examples for a Special Town Meeting may include: amending zoning bylaws, purchasing a new fire truck, etc.
However, voters may call a Special Town Meeting by petition. Special Town Meetings can be called for a number of reasons. Once the petition is delivered to the Selectmen, they must call a special meeting within 45 days.
The legislative body of Shrewsbury is composed of 240 Town Meeting Members representing ten (10) precincts for a three (3) year term. Any qualified candidate (registered voter in Shrewsbury) may have their name placed on the ballot by filing nomination papers with the Town Clerk.
Nomination papers are available at the Town Clerk’s Office in mid-January and must be obtained at least 53 days before the Town Election, and filed at least 50 days prior to the Town Election. A minimum of ten (10) signatures of registered Shrewsbury voters are required.
Candidates for re-election as a Town Meeting Member will be mailed a written certificate to file with the Town Clerk by a set-forth deadline. If the certificate is not received by the Town Clerk by the deadline, the candidate must pull nomination papers and run again.
While any resident can attend and speak at a Town Meeting it is only the elected town meeting members who can vote. Town Meeting Members are elected to 3 year staggered terms so that approximately 1/3 of the total town meeting membership stands for re-election each year.