Town of Provincetown

FY 2024 Budget

Division 1: General Government

113 Elections

Operating Expenditures

Budget History

Program Description

This budget covers the cost for elections and town meetings with most functions governed by the Mass General Laws, including maintaining the Voter Registration Information System and processing state and local ballot petitions. All newspaper publishing, workers for the elections and town meetings, annual census and street listing compilations are paid from this budget. In FY 2023, there will be 3 elections: State Primary Election (date yet to be determined, possibly in August 2022), State General Election November 8, 2022, and Annual Town Election May 9, 2023. One Annual/Special Town Meeting has been budgeted for April 2023.

Budget Statement

The number of elections changes each fiscal year and this budget increases or decreases based on the number of scheduled elections. Only one Town Meeting is budgeted, in April, for six nights and to date this has also covered the expense of a special fall Town Meeting without the need to budget specifically for that event.

As of October 2021, Senate Bill no. 459 is being debated on the State level and it would expand voting options in Massachusetts. The extent to which this Senate 459 could create permanent changes to the election laws impacts the increase in budget lines. In FY 2023, there will be 3 elections: State Primary Election (date yet to be determined, possibly in August 2022), State General Election November 8, 2022, and Annual Town Election May 9, 2023. Senate 459 proposes the additional early voting hours, including possible weekend hours, which account for increases in the election budget line 530110 in addition to the 3 elections scheduled.

The Town Clerk’s Office is requesting an additional $600 in line item 558500 Software and Licenses to cover cost of voting software annual maintenance agreements along with an additional $1496.75 to cover the costs of software associated with the Automark Machine which allows people with disabilities the ability to vote independently. This machine must be formatted for each election.

Major Accomplishments

  • The presidential election on November 3, 2020 posed a major challenge to Clerks and Election Officials across the country. The Town Clerk's Office managed to successfully conduct and process this election, coupled with days of early voting hours and mailing/processing mail-in ballots for Early Voting.
  • Effectively conducted, processed, and completed the Annual Town Election which had an unprecedented voter turnout of 44%.
  • Submitted all bylaw amendments approved at the April Annual and June Special Town Meetings to the Attorney General’s Office for approval in a timely manner;
  • Certified votes of the Annual Town Meeting (which was moved to May 2021) for the legislature, administration, various Town departments and State agencies as needed and appropriate.
  • Effective oversight of the annual street listing, resulting in accurate and up-to-date voter information.
  • Results of the Federal Census put our population total at 3664, and materials were provided to the Select Board in approval of Provincetown remaining a single precinct.

FY 2024 Objectives

  • Process and completion of 3 Elections: State Primary Election, State General Election and the Annual Town Election on May 9, 2023 without incident;
  • Certify votes of Town Meeting and submit bylaw articles to the Attorney General’s Office for approval in a timely manner, and also to submit other Town Meeting votes to appropriate entities in a similar manner;
  • Conduct 2023 annual listing of residents/voters and daily maintenance of the State’s Central Voter Registry;
  • Certify nomination papers, petition forms, residency and voter certificates.
  • Conduct Election worker training on new voting equipment purchased during FY22.

Performance / Workload Indicators

FY 2024 Additional Amount Requested

Additional Amount Requested: $2,900

Budget Line: 530700 Contracted Serv-Publishing

One Time Only or Ongoing Expense? Ongoing

Description of Additional Program, Product or Service:

This line item includes the costs for publishing which includes Town Warrants, Town Meeting(and the communications to public regarding times and warrant articles), elections, General and Zoning By-laws, Home-Rule Petitions, proposed Special General Court Legislation (related to Provincetown).

Cost/Benefit Analysis:

For Publishing of the Town Warrants: Town Meeting, Elections, Approved By-laws, Home Rule Petitions, Proposed Special General Court Legislation (related to Provincetown), Proposed Zoning and General By-laws, Town Meeting Times, and communications to the public regarding Town Meeting warrant articles in advance of Town Meeting. (Note: Many Town Meeting related publishing costs occur after the Attorney General’s decisions are made and therefore requiring us to publish during the next Fiscal Year’s cycle.)