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Some in Brookline think it's time for New England's largest town to become a middling-sized city

Brookline.News reports on efforts by a group to get enough signatures for a ballot question on converting the town into a city.

Brookline, with a population of about 62,000, assumed the mantle of the region's largest town in 2018, when, after a similar vote, the town of Framingham, with a population of about 71,000, became the city of Framingham.

Although the basics of Brookline town governance are similar to those of even the smallest Berkshire hamlet - Town Meeting acts as a legislature and the selectboard as its executive branch - Brookline and other large towns long ago gave up open town meeting, in which any resident could attend and vote, for a representative town meeting, in which a set number of town meeting members are elected by each of the town's voting precincts.

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Comments

Framingham looks much the same today as it did when it was a mere town. Have taxes there gone down? Have services improved? Are there fewer potholes than there used to be?

Otherwise, why not just leave things as they are?

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Perhaps the change is to remind certain residents that they live in a city and not a small rural hamlet.

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You find answers. For arguments in favor, check out https://www.brooklinecitycharter.com/, which is linked in the Brookline News article.

Framingham "looks the same"? Changing to a city government means a Manhattan skyline should pop up? I don't get it, although downtown Framingham certainly looks the more urban than it did earlier in my lifetime.

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...based on a recent experience...

Town meeting. Not for the faint of heart.

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