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Bryan Harvey: Election turnout increases

One of the arguments put forth in support of the council form of government was that it would engage more citizens through consequential voting. Council candidates, the argument went, would have to stake out defined positions and be accountable for them. They would have to earn votes by communicating with citizens. This kind of engagement would greatly increase citizen awareness of and stake in local issues, thus also expanding the extent to which the governors would have to pay attention to the governed. A new era of invigorated local democracy — engaging the many versus the few — was promised. …

Q&A on Tuesday’s Town Council election

Q. Now that the town is divided into five districts instead of 10 precincts, where will I vote? A. You will vote in the same place you have always voted. Click here for the locations. The precinct lines still exist with respect to polling places. Here’s a map of the district lines. Q. How many candidates can I vote for? A. You can vote for up to three of the six at-large candidates and two of the four candidates for district councilor. There will be 13 members of the Town Council, three elected at large and two for each of …

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An encounter with a drunk UMass student brings insights into how frat culture works

This guest post was written by Oliver Broudy, executive director of Amherst Live and a member of the University Town of Amherst Collaborative. I had a party at my house last month. Shortly after leaving the party — this was maybe 8 p.m. — one of my guests returned to report that some college kid was passed out in his car. Puke everywhere. He’d tried to rouse the kid but the kid refused to move. Should we call the cops? So okay, I go out to talk to the kid and see what’s up. He’s huge, shivering in the cold …