Town Meeting

Annual Town Meeting 2024

Begins Monday, May 6, 2024 at 7:00 PM at Hopkinton Middle School

Town Meeting is the pinnacle of a year’s worth of board and committee meetings, discussions, proposals, public hearings, site walks, and number crunching on the part of citizen volunteers and town officials.  eHop hosts Know Your Vote to give residents an opportunity to preview all of the issues that are up for a vote, so that we can all show up to Town Meeting informed and ready to engage in the process.  Know Your Vote is held in collaboration with the Town of Hopkinton.   

  • Weekly News Update – 04/22/2024

    Weekly News Update – 04/22/2024

    EHop’s Know Your Vote on APRIL 29TH • Updated Candidates List for the 2024 Town Election and Finalized Ballot Questions • Angela Perry completed her ‘big six’ after finishing Boston • Article 39: MBTA Communities Zoning Bylaw Trails Committee discusses upcoming ‘Dogs on Trails?’ forum 

  • MBTA Communities Zoning Bylaw (Article 39)

    MBTA Communities Zoning Bylaw (Article 39)

    Read the text of Article 39 “MBTA Communities Zoning Bylaw” sponsored by the Planning Board View the Zoning Map for Article 39 “MBTA Communities Zoning Bylaw” Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities (EOHLC) Presentation on MBTA Communities Hopkinton Press Release Regarding MBTA Communities Initiative 

  • Town Meeting 2024 Reference Documents

    Town Meeting 2024 Reference Documents

    ANNUAL TOWN MEETING 2024 Begins Monday, May 6, 2024 at 7:00 PM at Hopkinton Middle School eHop will hold its 12th Annual Know Your Vote forum on Monday, April 29 at 7:00 PM.  This will be an in-person forum at HCAM Studios (77 Main Street). It will 

  • Know Your Vote – Monday, April 29 at 7:00 PM

    Know Your Vote – Monday, April 29 at 7:00 PM

    eHop will hold its 12th Annual Know Your Vote forum on Monday, April 29 at 7:00-8:30 pm.  This will be an in-person forum at HCAM TV Studios (77 Main St, Lower Level). It will be broadcast live on HCAM-TV and YouTube. This is a unique opportunity to 

  • 2024 Annual Town Meeting & FY25 Budget Timeline

    2024 Annual Town Meeting & FY25 Budget Timeline

    Budget season for 2024-25 is already underway – we’ll keep our timeline updated as the year progresses so you can follow along. FY25 Town & School Budget Websites Date Timeline Details Documents Videos September 19, 2023 Town Manager gains consensus on budget timeline with Select 

Town Meeting 101 Video

Hopkinton has an Open Town Meeting form of government and is governed by its Town Charter and bylaws. An open Town Meeting means that all of the town’s voters may vote on all matters. (Some towns have a representative Town Meeting instead, and cities have a Mayor/City Council instead.) Each town has a different way of running its Town Meeting, depending on its bylaws or charter. The Citizen’s Guide to Town Meetings is available on the state website. (Due the pandemic, towns like Milford and Natick that have a “Representative Town Meeting” are able to hold remote Town Meetings through March 31, 2025, however towns like Hopkinton, Holliston, Ashland, Westborough and Upton that have an “Open Town Meeting” must hold their meetings in person, there is no remote option. Read about “The Open Meeting Law” on the state website for more information.)

Hopkinton Town Charter 2017

Hopkinton’s General Bylaws & Zoning Bylaws

For Further Reading:

Who, What, When and Where?

Who Can Vote?

All residents who are registered voters may vote at Town Meeting, but they must be present in person during the meeting to vote. There is no absentee voting for Town Meeting. Please note that if you are new to town or newly eligible to vote (i.e. recently turned 18 or recently became a U.S. citizen) you must register to vote at least ten days before any Town Meeting, Town or State election or the Presidential Primary in order to vote. You can register online, by mail or in person at the Town Clerk’s office.

What Do We Vote On?

Town Meeting decides three major things:

The list of articles to be voted is called the Warrant and it is published on the Town website prior to town meeting.

When is Town Meeting?

Per the bylaws, Hopkinton’s Annual Town Meeting typically begins on the first Monday in May at 7:00 PM. Special Town Meetings are sometimes called by the Select Board if unexpected or time-sensitive issues come up at other times of the year. A petition of 200 voters may also call a Special Town Meeting. By tradition the meeting ends at 11:00 PM and continues on consecutive evenings from 7:00-11:00 PM until all articles are voted. Annual Town Meeting typically lasts 2-3 nights.

Where is Town Meeting?

By tradition Town Meeting is typically held in the Middle School Auditorium (88 Hayden Rowe St), but occasionally it has been held in the High School Athletic Center if a larger crowd is expected or outside in a tent due to a pandemic. The meeting location will be specified in the Warrant.

Where can I get more Information?

eHop facilitates a “Know Your Vote” Spotlight Forum on Town Meeting every year, usually the week before Town Meeting.  This is your chance to ask questions and get the answers you need from town officials before Town Meeting. You can also subscribe to our “eHop Updates” emails to receive detailed Town Meeting information in your inbox, or follow us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Hopkinton Town Meeting 101

You do not need to bring anything to Town Meeting. However, many people find that bringing a notebook and pen or pencil is helpful to make notes during the discussions. No food or drink is allowed in the room. There is a drinking fountain outside the auditorium. Many people also find that something to occupy one’s hands is helpful. If you are a knitter, for example, bring a small project. There are plenty of padded stationary folding auditorium style chairs, which are reasonably comfortable. But remember you’ll be there for a long time, so wear comfortable clothes.

Town Meeting begins at 7 pm and is typically held in the Middle School Auditorium.  Allow time to park and walk to the building. As you enter the building head directly to the sign-in tables. To actually vote in the auditorium, you must be a Hopkinton resident registered to vote and you must sign in at the voter table. Your name will be checked off and you’ll be given a small piece of paper marked “Voter Pass.” Hold on to this slip of paper; you will need it when it is time for the votes to be counted. There will be a table of handouts and fact sheets regarding all the proposed articles to be voted on from the town boards and committees. There is some terrific information here that may answer many of your questions. The information will also be displayed on the auditorium screen above the stage during the meeting. Listening devices for the hearing impaired are available, please ask when you check in.

You do not have to be present for the entire town meeting to vote, though the more that participate in whole, the more balanced the democratic process. A quorum of 1% of the registered voters in town is needed for the transaction of any business. There is no set time to check in. The meeting will be broadcast live via HCAM TV (Comcast 8/Verizon 30/Streaming live at, but you MUST be present to vote. You just need to check in prior to the vote, whenever you arrive. You only have to check in once, and you can come and go from the auditorium as you please. You can text (with phone switched to silent mode) from within the auditorium, although there is minimal cell coverage. Step outside to make a phone call.

The Select Board presides over the meeting, which is facilitated by the Town Moderator and recorded by the Town Clerk. The format of the meeting itself follows procedures set out in the Town Bylaws (similar to Robert’s Rules of Order). Articles are presented, motions made, discussions ensue. Sometimes it can be a little confusing if an amendment comes up, so keep your ears open. Listen carefully — and you’ll learn a lot.

The committee or board presenting each article may make a brief presentation before each article. The Town Moderator will facilitate a question and answer period for registered residents. If you choose to ask a question or comment on an article, step up to one of the microphones located in the auditorium aisles. Wait for the moderator, to recognize you, then state your name and address, and keep your comments brief, civil, and to the point. The comment, question and answer period will end when either #1 the moderator sees that no one else is waiting at the microphone to speak or #2 a voter comes to the microphone, is recognized by the moderator, and says “I move the question” or “I call the question.” The motion to end debate must then be seconded and then adopted by a ⅔ vote.

As for the actual voting, most votes start as a voice vote. The moderator asks all in favor and all opposed. If the voice vote sounds close, it will go to a standing count. The moderator will ask all in favor to stand up. Now is the time to get out that piece of paper you received when you checked-in. Hold out your Voter Pass and remain standing until the counters for your section have indicated that your vote has been recorded.

Although you can leave at any time, we recommend you do NOT leave until the meeting is officially adjourned. Someone may ask for a recount, and if a large group has already left, the outcome could be different, especially if the original vote was close. If you have any other questions about Town Meeting, please ask.