The Annual Town Election will be held on Saturday, April 22 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Bridgewater Middle School.
In addition to voting for local elected positions, Bridgewater voters will be asked whether to approve a Proposition 2 ½ debt exclusion to build the new Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School facility. A Proposition 2 ½ debt exclusion allows the town to increase its levy limit temporarily to pay for bonds related to a specified capital project and purchase.
Construction of a new school building was approved by voters in Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School’s sending communities — which include Bridgewater and six additional communities — in a referendum on March 5, 2022. Bridgewater voters approved the ballot question by almost 2 to 1.
The question will ask voters whether the Town of Bridgewater should be allowed to exempt from Proposition 2 ½ provisions to pay for the town’s allocated share of the project’s bond, which is approximately $1.2 million. The bond will fund demolition of the current Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School building, construction of a new building and associated project costs.
Approval of the debt exclusion will allow the town to pay its share of the project by excluding the annual cost from the provisions of Proposition 2 ½. If voters do not approve the debt exclusion, the town will be required to pay the cost of the project through its general fund budget, which will have a significant impact on other municipal services.
Because the Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School project debt exclusion must be voted this year, the town opted to defer a planned debt exclusion for road repair work so that taxpayers would not be significantly impacted by two debt exclusions.
The Town Election Warrant, to include the Proposition 2 ½ debt exclusion question, was approved by the Bridgewater Town Council at its March 7 meeting. The warrant can be viewed in full by clicking here.
Additional Annual Town Election information can be found on the town website. The last day to register to vote in the Annual Town Election will be Wednesday, April 12 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Town Clerk’s Office in the Academy Building, 66 Central Square.
Questions about the debt exclusion can be directed to the Town Manger’s Office at TownManager@bridgewaterma.org.