Nomination Papers For Town-Wide Posts, Town Meeting Members Now Available For Pick Up

Photo: Example of a past years’ sample nomination paper

Nomination papers for town offices are now available for those who are interested in running for elected office in Belmont.

Candidates should stop by the Town Clerk’s office at Town Hall to pick up nomination papers; have your neighbors and friends, who are registered voters of Belmont, sign your nomination papers and submit the signed forms back by the deadline of Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2022 at 5 p.m.

Office hours of Town Hall for pick up and drop off or questions, no appointment is necessary:

  • Monday: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Friday: 8 a.m. to noon.

Here’s the list of offices that will be filled by the April 5, 2022 Annual Town Election as of December 16, 2021. To find out more about the responsibilities of these offices, please check out their individual web pages on the Town website  or watch any public meetings on Zoom or  

Town-wide Offices        Number of Seats Term of Office 
ModeratorVote for One1 year 
Select BoardVote for One3 years 
Board of AssessorsVote for One3 years 
Board of Cemetery CommissionersVote for One3 years 
Board of HealthVote for One3 years 
Trustees of the Public LibraryVote for Two3 years 
Members of the School CommitteeVote for Two3 years 
Municipal Light BoardVote for Five3 years, 2 years, 1 year 
 Town Meeting Members for
Precincts 1, 2, 6 and 8:
Vote for Thirty-six3 years, 2 years, 1 year 
Precincts 3, 4, 5 and 7Vote for Twelve3 years 

What’s Different About 2022? 

  • Town-wide Offices:  In addition to the customary Town-wide offices, (see below for specifics), per the May 3, 2021 vote of the annual Town Meeting, a new elected five-member Municipal Light Board has been created. The full five-member board will be elected in 2022; the two candidates who receive the most votes will win three-year terms, the next two will win two-year terms and the last one will win the one-year term.
  • Representative Town Meeting: The population data from the 2020 Federal Census required Belmont to change some of our voting precinct boundaries to more evenly distribute the residents and the Town Meeting Members who represent them. Per Belmont’s Representative Town Meeting Act, changes of precinct boundaries requires that all 36 seats for Town Meeting in a re-constituted precinct be considered open and must be filled by election.

A. The boundaries of Belmont Precincts 1, 2, 6 and 8 have been changed and therefore 36 seats are open and must be filled by election. The 12 candidates who receive the most votes will win three-year terms, the next 12 will win two-year terms and the last 12 will be one-year terms. The six current Town Meeting Members whose precincts will change have already been notified separately.

B. The boundaries of Belmont Precincts 3, 4, 5 and 7, are unchanged by the re-precincting efforts described above,  and will therefore elect the customary 12 Town Meeting Members, each for a  three-year term.  

Running for Re-election to Town Meeting: Precinct 2, 4, 5 and 7 current Town Meeting Members whose term of office expires in 2022 as well as all of the Town Meeting Members current serving in Precincts 1, 2, 6 and 8 have already been mailed a letter asking if the person will seek re-election. Deadline for return of the signed response letter to the Town Clerk is absolute: Tuesday, Jan. 25 at 5 p.m.  To confirm whether your current term expires in 2022, please check the Town Clerk’s “Town Meeting Members” web page:

The Town Clerk’s web pages contain quite a bit of information to help make a decision to seek office and running for election at  select Town Clerk, then select Running for Elected Office and Campaigning or feel free to call us at 617-993-2603, or email at 

Letter to the Editor: Elect O’Toole In Precinct 2, A Bold Student Voice

Photo: Devan O’Toole (left)

To the editor:

Belmont faces many challenges and immense opportunities in the coming years. It’s up to Town Meeting to seize those opportunities and to work toward innovative solutions. That requires Town Meeting Members unafraid to ask tough questions and put in the necessary work. It also requires a range of perspective in Town Meeting. The voice of Belmont students and young people continues to be lacking.

The Belmont High School Building Commission has zero student representation. Decisions on school funding and education issues that affect students’ lives each day are often made with little student input. When the administration asked students to give feedback on Mr. Sullivan as part of the significant decision of whether to fire him, the virtually unanimous student opinion was blatantly ignored. Belmont schools are experimenting with new technologies that are promoted by administrators and education corporations as “innovation,” but in reality can be counterproductive to learning. Talk of diversity and civil rights in our schools is often thrown around without input from our students of color. In discussions about recreational marijuana regulation, the danger to teenagers and young people is consistently brought up as one of the primary reasons against loosened marijuana laws. It’s critical that young people have a seat at the table in these decisions. In fact, ensuring that students are part of the conversation strengthens our judgments and benefits everyone in Belmont.

In an era of regression and uncertainty due to Trump at the national level, it’s more important than ever for Town Meeting and local government to push forward with new ideas and bold leadership. It’s vital that Town Meeting Members don’t just talk but walk the walk and put in the work necessary to drive real change. We must not accept the longtime status quo just because it is “how things are done.” It’s important to ask questions and hold our leaders accountable. I’m confident that Devan will bring a fresh, valuable, and much-needed voice to Town Meeting.

There’s no better person to stand up for our schools than Devan, who has been in discussions with school officials as Belmont High School Senior Class President and Student Representative to the School Committee and has already worked to support the new high school. He was also co-leader of the school’s Make a Statement Day, helped with the student Yes for Belmont effort, and has been deeply involved in the Belmont High School and Belmont communities in more ways than can be explained in this one article. Perhaps most importantly, being in the classroom five days a week simply allows for a unique and critically important perspective. Devan understands our schools’ intricacies and has a thorough understanding of the needs facing a new Belmont High School.

In the coming years under Trump, local government is where progress can and must continue. There’s so much work to do. To rebuild Belmont High, ensure adequate education funding, and facilitate the highest quality education. To push forward on clean energy and take action to protect our environment. To support immigrants and refugees in an uncertain time. To ensure transparency and accountability in town government. Devan has the energy, commitment, and leadership skills to meaningfully contribute to Town Meeting discussions and to make concrete progress.

I’m energized and beyond excited to support Devan O’Toole’s candidacy for Town Meeting in Precinct 2. Join me in supporting a bold student voice for Belmont’s future. Email to get involved, and be sure to vote on Tuesday, April 4.

Daniel Vernick

Town Meeting Member, Precinct 1

Letter to the Editor: Vote for Burgess-Cox for Precinct 2 Town Meeting

Photo: Vote on April 5. 

To the editor:

Belmont voters should head to the polls on April 5. Those in Precinct 2 should vote for me, Susan Burgess-Cox, for Town Meeting Member.   

I grew up on Lawrence Lane and moved to Radcliffe Road earlier this year after living on Hull Street and serving as a Town Meeting member in Precinct 4. I am currently a member of the School Committee and the Capital Budget Committee. My five-year-old twins, Maggie and Matthew, are in Kindergarten at the Butler School and will be enrolling at Winn Brook in the fall.    

Over the years, I have served Belmont as a member of the Disability Access Commission, the Senior Center Building Committee, Precinct 4 Town Meeting Member, the Wellington PTO and the Butler PTA. As a current School Committee and Capital Budget Committee member, I am working to address financial and policy issues related to increased enrollment in the schools and the capital needs of the town. Like many towns, Belmont faces challenges that require thoughtful planning. I would like to continue to address these challenges not only as a member of the School Committee but also as a Town Meeting member representing Precinct 2.

I would appreciate your vote on April 5.

Susan Burgess-Cox

Radcliffe Road

Letter to the Editor: Town Meeting Needs a Youth Perspective

Photo: Daniel Vernick

To the editor:

I’m running to bring new energy and a youth perspective to Town Meeting for Precinct 1. I’ve lived in Belmont for the past 18 years, attending Belmont Cooperative Nursery School and then the Belmont Public Schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade. I’ve been involved in the Belmont community and town government throughout middle and high school, from establishing Chenery Green Week and Multicultural Night in 8th grade Student Council to planning the MLK Breakfast and expanding high school representation on the Human Rights Commission as a Commission member.

I’ve often seen a disconnect between students and town leaders. The youngest of 294 Town Meeting Members is more than 30 years old; college and high school students have no representation on Town Meeting. That’s unacceptable. Leading the high school override effort made me realize that many in town just don’t understand where we’re coming from. There are so many issues that young people are uniquely impacted by and have an important perspective on, from social justice to a new high school to the latest technology and its integration into education. As an 18-year-old BHS graduate, I’ll make sure that the voices of Belmont’s youth are heard, and that students’ ideas are integrated into town policy.

I’ve seen firsthand the problems facing our schools and the need to maintain the highest quality education. I first became involved in activism with the 2010 override in 7th grade. Last year I again organized my classmates for an override, connecting energy at Belmont High School with activism in the community. As Belmont High School Vice President, my work included successfully advocating for library renovations and new study areas, evaluating candidates for superintendent, and planning events such as Senior Service Day. I have experience representing my classmates’ perspective both internally within the school administration and externally through the town. I’ll have unique insight on the new high school, working to connect students’ ideas with the broader Belmont community.

I envision a bold Belmont at the forefront of progressive change. A few priorities:

  • Schools. Build on the progress of the override. Our schools remain underfunded and often improperly managed. Belmont schools have done an enormous amount for me, and I’ll do everything in my power to preserve and improve them for future generations.
  • Environment. Belmont should be a leader in sustainability and clean energy. I’ll work to preserve conservation land, advocate for solar net metering, improve public transportation, and support the Community Path and other new recreation areas. I’ll also push for Belmont to follow the lead of cities from Cambridge to Framingham in divesting from fossil fuel corporations.
  • Teachers. The teachers I’ve had in Belmont are some of the most incredible people I know, and I’m certain I would not be here without their tireless work. Belmont must ensure that every teacher is treated with fairness and justice. I’ll voice the concerns of teachers and elevate their influence in the school administration. 
  • Innovation. Make Belmont business-friendly, and attract businesses to build the tax base. Improve town infrastructure and technological capabilities; Belmont’s restrictions on social media make its Web presence lacking and archaic. Resist town regulation of Airbnb and other new technologies.
  • Equality. Belmont doesn’t have an equal rights bylaw that officially states racial and LGBT equality. I’ll advocate for a comprehensive bylaw that includes equal transgender accommodations. We must do more to combat prejudice and create an inclusive community.
  • Responsive government. Stand up for greater transparency and hold town leaders accountable.

I was inspired to run by beloved 15-year Belmont teacher John Sullivan, who was unjustly fired last June. I organized students to resist the termination; we organized more than 50 students to attend a School Committee meeting in protest and wrote a petition that obtained 650 signatures. Sullivan was a mentor, a leader, and the definition of a 21st-century educator. His philosophy of learning is exactly what Belmont needs more of. I’ll never forget Sullivan, and I’ll never stop fighting for the respect and dignity that my teachers deserve.

Town Meeting should make Belmont a leader. We must stand out not just in education but in everything from infrastructure to sustainability. My goal is to expand youth involvement in town government and to get more students to run for town office in the future.

I’ll bring a fresh voice and new ideas to Town Meeting. With 17 candidates running for 12 seats, this will be a tight race and every vote will make a difference! Feel free to reach out to 781-697-9732 or if you have any questions or can help out with my campaign. Join me in the fight to empower young people and to make Belmont a leader. It would be an honor to have your vote this Tuesday, April 5th.

Daniel Vernick

Fairmont Street

Letter to the Editor: Mike Crowley for Town Meeting, Precinct 8

Photo: Vote on April 5.
To the editor: 
I’m asking for your support for Town Meeting member for Precinct 8 on April 5. My family is relatively new to Belmont, but we love our community and want to see it improve.
We need to continue investing in our schools and attending to critical infrastructure needs, including a new high school building and the repair of streets and sidewalks. We should support and expand green commuting options and recreation by constructing the Belmont Community Path. We need to attend to our long-term liabilities like pensions and retiree benefits without resorting to risky, quick-fix solutions like pension obligation bonds that have injured the financial health of so many communities. We can be more attentive to business development in our commercial districts, and more creative about improving town revenues through ideas like fee-based overnight parking on neighborhood streets. Finally, we need a community preservation focus to ensure the continuity and livability of our neighborhoods; therefore, I would support a temporary moratorium on teardowns and new home construction in Precinct 8 until we can institute a review process to ensure construction appropriate for our community.
I enjoyed a career in Washington, DC that included almost 25 years with the White House Office of Management and Budget. I bring a unique view to town governance, including a focus on the budget, revenue, and government efficiency from my time in government. Since 2013, I also have been consulting and serving on the boards of organizations focused on improving criminal justice policy and our society’s responses to violence. 
Please consider me on April 5 and be sure to vote!
Mike Crowley
Farnham Street

Letter to the Editor: Please, Don’t Vote for Me Precinct 4 Voters

To the editor:

I don’t know the best way to do this and wonder if a letter to the editor is the appropriate forum. If not, perhaps you can suggest something else. Here is what I want to say:

Dear Precinct Four voters,

My name will be on the ballot in April for Town Meeting member. Due to recent illness in my family, I will be unavailable to attend town meeting. Please vote for another candidate. I hope to have the opportunity to serve on Town Meeting another year.

Christine O’Neill

Agassiz Avenue

Feel Like Running? Nomination Papers Available Now for Town Office, Town Meeting

Want a say in how Belmont is run? Here’s your chance: Belmont Town Clerk Ellen Cushman has announced that nomination papers for Town Meeting and Town-wide office are available to be picked up at the Clerk’s office on the first floor of Town Hall starting today, Friday, Dec. 5.

The deadlines to return nomination papers to the Town Clerk’s office is 5 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015, said Cushman. 

The Town Election will take place on Tuesday, April 7. 

If you’re thinking of running for elected office in Belmont, Cushman is advising potential “runners” to take a look at the guide for Belmont’s elected government and how to run for elected office in the “Town of Homes.”

Candidates for town–wide office (such as selectman, school committee and several boards)

To be considered a candidate for town-wide office, you must be at least 18 years old and a registered voter in Belmont.

All candidates for town-wide office must secure the signatures of at least 50 registered Belmont voters and return the signed nomination papers by Feb. 17 at 5 pm. Cushman recommends that more signatures are collected and submitted in the event that some signatures are invalid.

Nomination papers are available for pick-up at the Town Clerk’s office. Before collecting signatures, the candidate must sign the nomination papers and fill in the office for which he/she will be a candidate.

Terms for Town Meeting Member

The elected term for Town Meeting Member is three years, though should a resignation occur, there may be openings for one or two year periods.

Candidate for re-election as Town Meeting Member

If you are an incumbent Town Meeting Member, in late December/early January of the year your term is due to expire, you will receive from the Town Clerk’s office a letter asking if you would like to be considered a candidate for re-election to Town Meeting for your precinct.

The candidate must sign and return the affirmation form to the Town Clerk’s office by Feb. 17 to be considered a candidate for re-election. If the date passes without return of the form, the candidate would be considered a new candidate for Town Meeting and would be required to secure the 25 signatures on the nomination paper and the words  “candidate for re-election” will not appear next to the name on the ballot.

New candidates for Town Meeting Member

To be considered a new candidate for Town Meeting Member, you must be at least 18 years old and a registered voter in Belmont in the precinct you wish to represent. If you are currently serving as a Town Meeting Member who was elected at caucus, not by town ballot, you will need to submit nomination papers as a new candidate.

Candidates for Town Meeting must secure the signatures of at least 25 registered voters from the precinct and return the signed nomination papers. Once again, Cushman recommends that more signatures are collected and submitted in the event that some signatures are invalid.

“We encourage all candidates for all elected offices, for both town-wide and for Town Meeting, to investigate the responsibilities of the post by reading the Town General Bylaws and Belmont Town Meeting Acts of 1926, and reading the minutes of the elected board,” said Cushman.