The Charlestown Neighbor-hood Council (CNC) will expand from 21 to 23 members because of the City Council’s redistricting of Boston that resulted in a new precinct in Charlestown.
Charlestown will now have eight precincts as opposed to the seven precincts that were in effect for the 2022 election cycle. Districts are reviewed every ten years following the compilation and release of census data relating to the population of each neighborhood in Boston.
CNC Chair Tom Cunha elaborated on the board’s expansion following a discussion of the matter at Monday’s monthly CNC meeting.
“A resident from the new precinct will be elected,” said Cunha. “An additional at-large member will be added, making it 23 members total.”
The reason for the 23rd member is simple mathematics, explained Cunha. “We added an at-large member to make it 23 because with an odd number, you can avoid deadlocks in votes.”
As an example, the Boston City Council has an odd number (13) of councillors (nine district, four at-large).
Cunha said any resident of the new precinct may run for the CNC seat. In the at-large election, any resident of the Charlestown neighborhood may run for the CNC seat.
CNC Councilor-at-at-Large and Election Chair Barbara Van Duzer Babin said candidates must obtain 25 signatures on their nomination papers to appear on the ballot for the election, which is set for Saturday, Feb. 4.
The Charlestown Neighborhood Council currently consists of seven precinct members, seven at-large members, and seven members representing non-profit organizations in Charlestown.
The CNC, which has excelled in its important role as a sounding board for Charlestown residents about issues affecting the neighborhood, has been in existence since 1982. Tom Cunha, Peter Looney, and Dennis McLaughlin were the board founders. The CNC meets the first Tuesday of the month (No meetings during July and August) at the Knights of Columbus. The next CNC meeting is Jan. 3, 2023.