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Town Meeting to refocus on cameras

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Several Town Meeting members concerned about privacy rights have proposed a resolution that would ask the Board of Selectmen to remove 11 surveillance cameras from a number of busy intersections in town. The resolution is one of 19 articles on the warrant for the Special Town Meeting beginning Nov. 19. The cameras were installed at the beginning of 2009, and set off a controversy that led to Town Meeting approving a resolution in June 2009 seeking their removal. Instead, selectmen voted to limit the use of the cameras from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. except in the case of emergencies or special events. The issue was revived this spring when, at the urging of Police Chief Daniel O’Leary, the town committee charged with overseeing the use of the cameras voted to recommend that selectmen abolish the time limit. The article on this fall’s Town Meeting warrant was prompted at least in part by the oversight committee’s proposal to keep the cameras on all day, said Clint Richmond, one of its lead sponsors. Other articles on the warrant include a proposal to have the town lease the Singletree Reservoir site for an installation of photovoltaic solar panels; three items regarding regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries; a resolution opposing a US attack on Syria; and a zoning change that would reduce the minimum number of parking spaces required for studio and one-bedroom housing units.

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