Amherst residents will have an opportunity to respond to the specific proposals for changing Amherst government that the Amherst Charter Commission has developed in response to input from many residents, Amherst town staff, elected officials and committees, as well as perspectives and beliefs of the individual commissioners. The first round of “listening workshops” sought broad input on any and all topics of concern and passion to participants. This round of feedback sessions seeks input on very specific proposals coming out of Commission deliberations, proposals focused primarily on executive and legislative functions as well as on public participation.
The Charter Commission, elected in 2016, is meeting to prepare a written document which establishes and defines the structure of the government for Amherst. This document, called a Charter, may create local offices, distribute powers, duties and responsibilities among local offices, and may establish and define certain procedures to be followed. Our work must be completed within 18 months of our election, and when completed, the final recommended Charter is submitted to the voters. If approved by the voters, the Charter would serve as Amherst's "constitution".