Statement about Hanover Town Meeting

The results of Hanover’s selectboard election Tuesday are yet another reminder of the violence of white apathy. Only 850/11,600 folks voted and incumbents William Geraghty and Peter Christie won by a large margin. Only 300 voting residents were in attendance at the Town Meeting Tuesday evening; and by the time the budget vote came around at 8:45, only 200 were left. This represents 1% (or less) of registered Hanover voters. If we’re to pay careful attention to who can attend late-night, poorly-advertised, confusingly reschedule meetings–external barriers may include non 9-5 workers, access to transportation, financial limitations, domestic workers, etc.–it becomes obvious how the budgeting process leaves (or perhaps strategically obscures) the opinions of far too many. Call on Hanover to establish a minimum number of required votes to pass the budget with more equitable voting times & methods of voting.

These numbers remind us how, despite the progressive virtues extolled by Upper Valley towns, voters refuse to shift power out of central circles. In typical fashion, Hanover residents continue to reject the demands of BIPoC communities in lieu of superficial promises to support “communities of color with respect to policing”. As the @UV DSA wrote, “ [The motion] presented no goals and no actionable items, only a general nod to hundreds of years of injustice and a weak promise to think about doing better… Supporting communities of color begins with listening to their demands. Hanover had a chance to do this last night and failed.” UV towns, particularly those that hoard excess wealth, must acknowledge that hate DOES, in fact, “grow in [our] rocky soil”.

We stand by Dalia Rodriguez Caspeta and Kristina Wolff. Thank you for all your hard work.