Boy Scouts get civics seminar from Select Board

Nov 13, 2023

The Select Board had some extra watchdogs at its Nov. 13 meeting: Boy Scouts from Dartmouth’s Troop 74 came to learn about how the town’s executive branch functions and ask a few questions of its elected members. 

The scouts in attendance held true to the Boy Scout’s motto and came  prepared. Many of them had looked over the Nov. 13 agenda, which mostly concerned alcohol licenses, and tailored their questions to the subject. 

“Does a business that has this license have to be inspected by you and why?” one scout asked. 

The Select Board explained that the inspecting body depends on what kind of license is being approved. 

Another scout asked how long each Select Board member has been on the board. This allowed member Shawn McDonald to explain his long history of civic service in town, which includes 13 years on the Select Board, 15 years on the School Committee, 3 years on the finance committee and 3 years on the planning board. “I was the youngest person to be elected in this town — at the time,” he said. 

“What are the greatest challenges?” asked another scout, to which McDonald replied “knowing that you cannot please everybody.”

He elaborated: “I try to make my town, my community, my fellow residents, a little bit better every day. I know that some of the decisions I make are not going to be very popular decisions.”

Stanley Mickelson thanked the group for coming and said the scouts are going to be among the next generation of civic leaders.

“You’re going to make yourselves proud, and you’re going to make your parents proud and you’re going to make the town proud,” Mickelson said. 

The last question asked by the Boy Scouts was also the easiest. “What’s the best part of your job,” one scout asked. 

“Meeting with you kids,” Mickelson said.