Thanks for your help in making the Home Rule Petition a resounding success!
A total of 292 GB residents turned out on a cold December evening for the special town meeting and voted nearly unanimously in favor. Since then, the bill was taken to Beacon Hill where it was filed, named, and assigned to a committee the last week of December. House bill 4272 (H.4272), the GB Home Rule Petition, is before the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure for consideration. This is the same committee in which Senate bill 101 and House bill 13, the two horse racing bills that the home rule petition is a response to, are being considered.
There will be a public hearing, before this committee, on House bill 4272 – it is tentatively set for January 27th in Gardner Auditorium at the State House in Boston.
In order for the Home Rule Petition to move fully through the legislative channels into law it is imperative that Great Barrington demonstrates a unified voice of support from residents, business owners, and governing bodies to the legislative committee that is considering the bill.
We need as many GB residents and business owners as possible to attend this hearing, and to give your oral testimony in support of the Home Rule Petition to the legislators. Please save the January 27th date. We will give the confirmed date and time of the hearing in an email update as soon as we know. You do not have to be a GB resident to support the bill by attending and/or giving testimony. We all know that South Berkshire county would be greatly impacted by horse racing in GB and encourage county residents to give their voice of support as strongly as town residents.
Once we have the confirmed date and time we will be organizing a carpool meeting spot in the Berkshires and a orientation meeting spot at the State House in Boston before the public hearing for all of you that can attend. We will be emailing information with directions, parking, and where to go when you get there.
Those residents and business owners who cannot make it to Boston are encouraged to send written testimony. Once the hearing date and time are confirmed we will send out a sample of a testimony letter with talking points and the email addresses of the legislators, as well as a link to a GB community letter of support for the bill you can sign.