On Monday, I was sworn into my seventh term on the Hopkinton Town Council.
In addition, I was elected to my third term as council vice president. I have started now a third non-consecutive period as a Town Council member.
I think it very important that allTown Council members realize they are not the only members of a Town Council.
That is crucial to the town, individual town council members, as well as the Town Council institutionally. The Town Council as a body needs to appreciate input from the public, staff, and its various boards and commissions. Those of us on the Town Council may be clothed with the powers of our office, but we should not let that power blind us that we have all the answers, or are always right!
Those of us of the new Town Council need to take note that we had no competition listed on the ballot. Remembering we did not earn our elections in the traditional way is very important.
Our Recreation Commission needs to be active, and get some new members. I know there are opportunities on the Planning Board to serve.
I need to acquaint myself better with other board and commission opportunities. I remind our citizens you need not be an expert to be on a board or commission, so do not be intimidated!
The Town Council is provided with packets of information. The latest one is in regard to the 2020 Census, since the census is done every 10 years and determines apportionment to the United States House of Representatives, among other things. Rhode Island could potentially lose one of its seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Since the early 1900s, the number of seats in that body have been limited to 435 members. I do not know what compensation census members get. Those interested need to check out 2020census.gov/jobs and 1-855-562-2020 for details. Those who are deaf, hard of hearing, and/or with speech disabilities should note 800-877-8339 TTY/ASCII, and www.gsa.gov/fedrelay.
To keep abreast on Hopkinton town government, I advise our citizens to check the town website at www.hopkintonri.org. To e-mail the whole Town Council use firstname.lastname@example.org. To reach me personally, please use 401-360-4603 and email@example.com. Citizens need to remember, an individual Town Council member cannot direct a town employee to do something. We are required to work through the town manager.
I want to hear from my constituents!
Scott Bill Hirst
The writer is a member of the Hopkinton Town Council.