By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – When the next local, state and national elections take place many residents may be casting their votes at a new polling location – the new Senior Center at 40 New St. A proposal submitted by Mayor Arthur Vigeant to consider changing the polling locations of Ward 3, Precinct 1; Ward 4, Precincts 1 and 2; Ward 5, Precincts 1 and 2; was referred to the Operations and Oversight Committee at the June 1 City Council meeting.
Vigeant said the decision to move to one central polling location was made after conferring with City Clerk Lisa Thomas and Department of Public Works (DPW) Commissioner John Ghiloni. If approved by the City Council, it will be necessary to gain approval of the Massachusetts Legislature for Ward 5, Precinct 2, and Ward 4, Precinct 2, as they will be moved to a location not adjacent to the precinct.
“I will work with our Legislative Delegation to file the necessary Home Rule Petition through the legislature,” Vigeant stated in his communication to the council.
It is also mandated by the state that the city notify by mail all registered voters affected by a polling location change.
Current voting places are: Ward 3, Precinct 1, at the Masonic Hall, 8 Newton St.; Ward 4, Precincts 1 and 2, at the Boys and Girls Club, 169 Pleasant St.; Ward 5, Precinct 1, at the former Senior Center, 250 Main St.; and Ward 5, Precinct 2, at the Masonic Hall.
In other business, councilors approved the mayor’s request for a transfer of $34,000 from the Open Space Stabilization Fund to purchase a parcel of land at 11 New St., adjacent to the new Senior Center.
“Purchasing the parcel would give the city various options for use of it moving forward, including storage for landscaping equipment for the Senior Center and Ward Park and additional public parking,” Vigeant said.
The 1,694-square-foot piece of land is located in the middle of a residential neighborhood which has caused residents to register complaints to the mayor’s office through the years. When it becomes property of the city, the DPW will maintain its upkeep and improve its appearance while accommodating the uses proposed by the mayor.