The LWVMA Study on the Massachusetts Ballot Question Process

Submit your League’s Consensus Report to LWVMA

Consensus Reports are due to the LWVMA by February 16, 2019. Please submit your report online at this link. To prepare for your board’s approval and the online submission, download this editable Word file for internal use.

Local League Consensus Meetings

Lexington11/25/18; 12/9/18; 1/6/19
2:00-4:00 pm
Private homeMargaret Coppe
Arlington-Winchester1/6/19; 1/13/19 (snow date)
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
15 High St, WinchesterPatty Shepard
Hingham1/9/19; 1/25/19
7:00 pm
Private homeElizabeth Danis
Franklin County1/13/19
Time TBD
170 Main St, GreenfieldMarie Gauthier
2:00-4:00 pm
1501 Beacon Street, BrooklineErnie Frey
11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Private homeAmy Smith
1:30 pm
Sudbury Police Station Meeting RoomCarolyn Lee
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Waban Library Center, 1608 Beacon Street, Waban
1:30 pm
Arnold Room, Wellesley Free Library, 530 Washington St, WellesleyIrene Flint
Susan Clapham
Cape Cod Area1/15/19
9:30 am – 1:00 pm
Harwich Community CtrFlorence Seldin
6:30 pm
Curtis Hall, JP Public BuildingKerry Costello
Concord-Carlisle1/16/19 9:30 am
1/16/19 7:00 pm
*two meetings, same day
Private homeNancy Beeuwkes
1:00 p.m.
Mary Atwood Room, J.V. Fletcher Library, 50 Main Street, WestfordLaura Dickey
1:00 pm
Private homeLee Mondale
Waltham1/22/19 7:00-8:30 pm, Study meeting to review materials and discuss;
2/12/19 7:00 – 8:30 pm, consensus meeting
Waltham Public Library, 735 Main Street, Trustees Room (3rd Floor)Kathy Luvisi
6:30-9:30 pm
North HillCarol Patey
Amherst1/24/19, 2:00-4:00 pm
1/26/19, 10:00 am-noon
1/24/19 meeting location: Craft Room at Applewood, 1 Spencer Dr., Amherst
1/26/19 meeting location: TBD
Susan Millinger
10:30 am – 1:00 p.m
22 Hemlock Lane, BedfordLora Goldenberg
Wayland and Weston1/29/19
6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
41 Cochituate Road, Wayland. Karen Kavet
Acton Area1/29/19, 7:00 pm
2/6/19, 7:00 pm (snow date)
Acton Memorial Library, 486 Main StreetPaulina Knibbe
Janet Adachi
6:30 p.m.
Norwood Recreation DepartmentCourtney Rau Rogers
Plymouth Area1/31/19
6:30 p.m.
Manomet LibraryLyle Lawrence
Northampton Area/ Springfield Unit2/2/19
10:00 am- 2:00 pm
Florence Civics CenterJean Cherdack
Framingham Unit2/3/19
1:30 pm – 4:30 pm
J Room (downstairs)Framingham Main Library, Lexington Street
Jim Pillsbury
Westwood/Walpole/Dedham2/4/19 7:00 pm
2/11/19 (snow date)
660 High St, WestwoodMarcia Hirshberg
Hamilton Wenham2/5/19 12:00-2:00 pm
2/5/19 7:00 pm
Hamilton-Wenham Public Library (12-2 pm);
Private home (7:00 pm)
Dacia Rubel
7:00 pm
Community Barn, 37 Wheeler Rd, GraftonEllen Goguen
Salem Unit2/9/19
2:00-4:30 p.m.
Beverly Library 32 Essex St., BeverlyJen Lynch


Local Leagues: Please submit your consensus meeting information to

Why a League Study?

This study incorporates the intersection of the League’s areas of mission: voting and advocacy. LWVMA has not studied the initiative and referendum process in MA and has no positions on this aspect of voting/elections.

LWVMA Study Documents

Consensus Meeting Documents

What Should Local Leagues and Units Do?

Watch the Webinar on Conducting the Study

Topics covered included an overview of the study, study materials, role of local Leagues/Units/members-at-large, consensus meetings, reporting consensus results, and getting further help.

Watch the webinar on YouTube.

Identify a Study Contact

The LWVMA Study Committee is asking each participating League/Unit to identify a Study Contact. This person will receive periodic information about the study and updates. Please email with the League/Unit name and Study Contact name and email address.

Save your red booklets “Information for Voters 2018”

All League members should save their red booklets, which were distributed by mail to the households of all registered voters starting September 24. Bring them to the consensus meeting as a reference for several consensus questions.

Form a local study committee

The study committee will use the materials provided to become familiar with the subject and the consensus questions. It will coordinate a consensus meeting and report the results to the LWVMA. The committee should check the LWVMA website regularly and begin reading the materials posted. The committee will become the local “experts,” and an important link between local Leagues and the LWVMA study committee.

Schedule local consensus meetings

As you plan your calendar, include at least one time for a consensus meeting. Some Leagues may want to schedule two, one in the daytime and one in the evening. It is up to the local League to determine the best format. Consensus meetings should be held within December 1 to February 15. The local board must approve the consensus report, so be sure to leave time to complete this step.

Submit your League’s Consensus Report to LWVMA

Consensus Reports are due to the LWVMA by February 16, 2019. Please submit your report online at this link. To prepare for your board’s approval and the online submission, download this editable Word file for internal use.

How can my League or Unit get help?

Study Timeline

June-November 2018Local Leagues form study committees
September 7, 2018Final Study Guide and Study Report posted
October 1, 2018All materials posted
October 15, 2018; 7:30 pmWebinar*
October 17, 2018 ; 11 amWebinar*
November 13, 2018; 7:30 pmWebinar*
November 14, 2018; 3 pmWebinar*
Dec. 1, 2018 – Feb. 15, 2019Local Leagues hold consensus meetings
February 16, 2019Deadline for consensus reports to be submitted
June 7-8, LWVMA Convention 2019New position is circulated to local Leagues and adopted by Convention delegates

*The four webinars will all cover the same subject matter and will be about 1 hour long.

The Study Scope

The scope of the study is to review the Massachusetts laws and regulations that govern statewide citizen-initiated ballot questions (initiative and referendum process); consider the consequences of current laws and regulations; and propose concrete next steps that LWVMA could take to enact change, if the study results in recommended change.

Study Committee

Karen Price, Co-Chair, LWVMA board, LWV-Needham
Donna Hooper, Co-Chair, LWVMA board, LWV-Lexington
Karen Callanan, LWVMA Member at Large
Carol Patey, LWV-Needham
Florence Seldin, LWV-Cape Cod Area

To contact the study committee email