The town meeting season in the southern Berkshires has begun and it kicks into high gear this evening with annual town meetings being held in several towns including Great Barrington, Sheffield, West Stockbridge and New Marlborough.

Great Barrington’s meeting will get underway at 6:00 p.m. at Monument Mountain Regional High School on Stockbridge Road. There are several items on a busy town meeting warrant. Voters will be asked if there should be a limit on the number of retail marijuana shops in the town. Other agenda items will include, proposed zoning changes and short-term rental rules. There are citizens petitions calling for the renaming on Monument Valley Regional Middle School and for the repeal of a town ban on the sale of single-use plastic water bottles. Also, on the agenda is a fiscal 2020 town budget of $28.3 million, an increase of four percent over the previous budget.

Town meeting voters in Sheffield will consider a fiscal 2020 budget of $10.5 million, an increase of one percent. Agenda items there include by-laws regulating the marijuana industry, if the town should impose a six percent tax on all lodging, and an amendment to the regional school district agreement. The Sheffield meeting gets underway at 7:00 p.m. at Mount Everett Regional High School's auditorium.

 

The annual town meeting in West Stockbridge starts at 7:00 p.m. at the town hall on State Line Road. A town budget of $5.5 million dollars is on the table, an increase of 6.3 percent. The town will also consider a 37-article agenda.

The town of New Marlborough holds its annual town meeting at 7:00 p.m. tonight at the fire house on Norfolk Road. This year’s annual town meeting will include 57 articles. Voters in the town will also consider a fiscal 2020 operating budget of $5.8 million, an increase of 3.2 percent.