Former Selectman Ted Teichert is collecting signatures for a petition calling for a special town meeting if Andover is forced to cancel its annual Fourth of July fireworks.
At last week’s Annual Town Meeting, Shawsheen Road resident Cindy Nasiatka successfully amended the article allocating $14,000 for the annual Jerry Silverman Fireworks to require the Town to hire a pyrotechnics company that uses biodegradable fireworks. Last year, plastic from the fireworks rained down on homes in her neighborhood adjacent to Andover High School.
In a Facebook post, Teichert said the Andover Select Board will discuss the issue when it meets at 7 p.m. on Monday. Town Manager Andrew Flanagan confirmed the board had not made a decision on the issue, but will discuss options on Monday.
Town officials were caught off guard by the amendment to Article 23, and say there is no provider that makes fully biodegradable fireworks. “We have a vendor for the typical show,” Town Manager Andrew Flanagan said a day after Annual Town Meeting passed the amended article. “It’s my understanding the vendor can’t do a show that is similar in size and scale of the usual show with 100% biodegradable shells.”
What To Know About Special Town Meetings In Andover
Special Town Meetings are called for limited purposes when the Annual Town Meeting warrant is closed. The Andover Select Board can call a special town meeting, but registered Andover voters can petition the select board to call one if they collect 200 signatures from registered voters.
Town Clerk Austin Simko said Thursday Teichert had not asked him to certify a petition for the special town meeting. “He may be waiting until after the Select Board meeting on Monday,” he said.
Once a special town meeting is called, voters can add articles to the warrant by collecting 100 signatures from registered voters who support the article.
Special town meetings come with a cost: the Town spends roughly $40,000 to hold the gatherings.
For more info on Town Meeting and Special Town Meeting, see the Town of Andover’s Website.
Photo: Dave Copeland/Andover News