Less than one week remains for a Westport resident to petition to run for a seat as a member of the Representative Town Meeting, (RTM), the town’s 36-member legislative body. The deadline to file a petition is Tuesday, Sept. 10.
“The process is rather simple," Town Clerk Patricia Strauss said. Residents interested in running for the RTM can pick up a petition at the Town Clerk’s office and, after gathering 25 signatures of registered voters in the petitioner’s district, return the petition to the Town Clerk by next Tuesday.
District maps will be supplied to petitioners, Strauss said.
Currently, 15 persons have shown interest in running as a petitioning candidate, but only five petitions have been returned. Twenty-nine incumbents are running for the 36 positions. If all 15 petitions are returned, five of the nine RTM districts will be contested -- Districts 2, 3, 4, 8 and 9. District 7 will have no contest. Districts 1 and 6 will be short with one vacancy each.
"I encourage everyone to consider running for the RTM. It's a non-partisan group of civic-minded people making important decisions for our town," RTM Moderator Eileen Lavigne Flug said.
Westport's RTM has the final vote on the town budget and appropriations over $20,000; adopts new ordinances; approves union contracts; and hears appeals of certain land use decisions.
RTM members' contact information is on the town website -- Flug advises residents interested in running to call or email current members should they have questions.
A list of petitioning candidates and incumbents is posted outside the Town Clerk’s office, Room 105, in Town Hall. This year’s election is Tuesday, Nov. 5.