Brattleboro charter change heads to governor’s desk

Published: May. 21, 2023 at 7:36 PM EDT
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BRATTLEBORO, Vt. (WCAX) - Supporters of a charter change in Brattleboro to allow 16- and 17-year-olds to vote in local elections say it doesn’t go far enough.

The House and Senate have both passed the measure which now heads to the governor’s desk for his signature. Gov. Phil Scott, R-Vermont, vetoed a similar bill in the past.

Supporters say local issues affect young people, as well, and they should be able to weigh in. But those with Brattleboro Common Sense, the nonprofit that helped spearhead the initiative several years ago, say the charter change falls short.

“They wanted to be able to vote on the school board matters and that part is gone so it would have been better if the Legislature had worked to change that part and keep it in there,” said Kurt Daims of Brattleboro Common Sense.

Officials from the Scott administration say the governor’s concerns, which include consistency for elections across the state, remain. We do not know if lawmakers will have the votes to override a potential veto.

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