The original Small Town Summit was launched by members of the Charlemont Select Board in April 2016 to bring together Western Massachusetts Select Board and Finance Committee members to work on common municipal challenges. Since then, Summit attendees have drafted a list of legislative priorities, started exploring ways to share services across town lines, and recently created two workgroups focused on emergency services legislation and payments for state-owned land. We have met with and shared legislative proposals with our local legislators.
Although meetings of the Summit have drawn participants from more than 20 communities around all four counties in Western Massachusetts, most of the meetings have been held in Charlemont. This location made attendance difficult for leaders from municipalities outside of western Franklin County.
Rural Commonwealth took over coordination of the Summit in August 2017. Our goals are to build on the Summit’s past work and to expand participation by moving Summit meetings to different rural locations around Massachusetts in the upcoming year. The FY2018 meeting schedule is available here.