You are here

Printer-friendly versionPDF version
Wednesday, February 05, 2020 8:30 am to 3:30 pm
Event Location: 
Capitol Plaza
100 State Street
05602 Montpelier , VT
$68 PACIF; $98 VLCT; Add $10 after registration deadline
Registration Deadline: 
Wednesday, January 29, 2020


This workshop is designed for moderators, selectboard members, town clerks, town managers and administrators. All local officials who are interested in learning how to run town meeting are encouraged to attend. Geared toward both new moderators and seasoned veterans, the workshop will focus on the statutory requirements for town meeting, Robert’s Rules of Order, recent pertinent court cases, and best practices for making it through Town Meeting Day unscathed.


8:30    Registration Opens (light breakfast provided)

8:55    Welcome and Overview
Abby Friedman, Director, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center

9:00    Ruling the Unruly, Part 1: How to Moderate a Vermont Town Meeting
Ed Chase will deconstruct the annual town meeting process step by step. In Part 1, he will explain the basic role and responsibilities of the moderator. He will also review the most common types of motions used at town meetings, pursuant to Robert’s Rules of Order.
Edward Chase, Moderator, Town of Westford

10:30    Break

10:45    Ruling the Unruly, Part 2: How to Moderate a Vermont Town Meeting
In Part 2, Ed will focus on the role of the moderator by addressing motions and amendments, voting procedures, and more nuanced topics.
Edward Chase, Moderator, Town of Westford

12:15    Lunch (provided)

1:00    Mock Town Meeting
It’s Town Meeting Day at the Capitol Plaza! The town meeting has been warned and its articles are ready to be acted upon. With the assistance of designated “town residents,” Ed Chase will demonstrate how to deal with common town meeting articles and difficult situations, and how best to achieve a smooth and effective town meeting experience.
Session Moderator: Edward Chase, Moderator, Town of Westford
Mock Meeting Attendees (invited) : Susan Clark, Moderator, Town of Middlesex; Jerry Cole, Moderator, Town of Cambridge; Jon Gailmor, Moderator, Town of Elmore; Daniel Post Senning, Moderator, Town of Duxbury

2:00    Civility Tips for Town Meeting Moderators
In addition to parliamentary procedure, town meeting moderators facilitate civil discussion of political and sometimes controversial topics. Learn how to help residents engage in courteous dialogue and respect different opinions of controversial topics. While the “unruly” make important decisions about town business, the moderator plays a key role in de-escalating stressful situations and guiding neighbors in polite discourse.
Speakers to be announced.

2:30    Conclusion and Time to Complete Evaluations