Mayor Weinberger Responds to Governor’s Veto of All-Resident Voting Charter Change

Burlington, Vt. – The City of Burlington had four voter-approved charter changes awaiting state approval this legislative session. Last week, Governor Phil Scott allowed bill H.508, an act relating to the ranked-choice voting provisions of the charter of the City of Burlington, to become law without his signature, and he signed bills H.506, relating to election boundary provisions, and H.507, relating to polling place provisions. The Governor vetoed bill H.509, an act relating to voter qualification provisions, which if allowed to become law, will expand voting rights for City elections to individuals who are 18 years of age or older on the day of the election, legally living in the United States, and who can claim Burlington as their primary residence. 

Mayor Weinberger made the following statement:  

“Allowing all legal residents to vote in our local elections gives a voice to these valued members of our community who live, work, and pay taxes in Burlington on the important local issues that shape their lives. On the 2023 Town Meeting Day ballot, nearly sixty-eight percent of Burlington voters supported this important expansion in voting rights. Our community, our Administration, our City Council, and a super-majority of the legislature have all agreed that this charter change should become law.  

Given that elections are administered by local government, that two other Vermont municipalities have already successfully expanded voting in local elections to all legal residents, and that the courts have upheld their authority to do so, I do not see the Governor’s concerns about a patchwork approach as a compelling reason to override the desire of a strong majority of Burlington voters. I urge the Vermont House and Senate to override the Governor’s veto later this month.” 


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Mayor's Office