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Town Meeting Warrant discussion forum

November 7, 2010

The town of Norfolk, MA has taken an unprecedented step towards making government more transparent and technologically-advanced by putting their town meeting warrant online for public discussion. Town leaders say “the interactive discussion forum will be a place where Norfolk residents can comment on Warrant articles or Recommendations, ask and answer questions about them, provide background material, or advocate in support of, or in opposition to, various articles.” Only Norfolk residents are allowed to participate in the discussion forum, and their real names are posted.

With a Board of Selectmen that has supposedly committed itself to improving transparency in town government after the Siemens fiasco last spring, putting the town meeting warrant online for discussion might be a reasonable idea. Norfolk’s service is hosted by OnlineTownHalls.com, which, according to their website, “offers elected leaders, government agencies, and organizations the ability to engage the public in a meaningful way on a large scale.”

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