The Massachusetts town considering a ban on all tobacco sales has decided against moving forward with its freedom curbing rule. The town of Westminster, MA achieved 15 minutes of fame when its nanny state town government made national headlines over the intended ban. Freedom-killing do gooders were greeted with the cold fist of freedom when the town residents showed up to give their comments at a town meeting last week. Yesterday the Board of Health had a meeting and killed the proposal.
At the board’s regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday evening, members voted 2-1 in favor of removing from consideration a regulation that would prohibit all tobacco sales in town. At the beginning of the meeting, during a period designated for discussion of board member concerns, member Ed Simoncini moved to remove the regulation from consideration. Member Peter Munro seconded his motion.
“The town is not in favor of the proposal, and therefore I am not in favor of the proposal,” Simoncini said.
The public comment town meeting was shut down after a mere 25 minutes by Andrea Cates, the lone dissenter in the vote. Simoncini said about the meeting. “The whole idea was to get everybody’s input, and we messed up,” he said. “Somehow the hearing got away from us.”
After the motion passed, Simoncini thanked residents for their participation in the decision process.
“You made the difference,” he said. “It didn’t go as smoothly as we would have liked, but thank you.”
Meeting attendees applauded after he spoke, and shook his hand as they left.
Town businesses celebrated the victory. “Less than 30 minutes after the meeting ended, there was already a sign outside Westminster Pharmacy reading ‘we won!'”
A petition to recall two of the three Board of Health Members was issued yesterday to a town resident. The third member, Andrea Cates, is not eligible for recall as her term ends in the spring. The petition was issued prior to the decision but town members plan to move forward anyway. “What I’m receiving as feedback from customers is that they’d still want to go ahead with it,” Vincent’s Country Store owner Brian Vincent said. “The board made the decision that they wanted to ban tobacco at one point, and pursued it for six months, and I think a lot of people have a problem with that thought process.”
Ladies and Gentlemen, this is how it’s done.