MILLBURY, Mass. — In a surprising move, Millbury Selectman Brian Stowell announced Tuesday evening he will not seek re-election in the April voting.
Other professional opportunities would conflict with a commitment to the Board of Selectmen, Stowell said. Rather than run for re-election and have to step down, Stowell said he decided not to seek another term.
Selectmen Chairman E. Bernard Plante said he understands the decision but said Stowell will be missed as someone who worked hard and was a “good member of the board.” The position would be open and he hoped that people in town would come out to run for office, Plante said to the audience watching on local cable access.
In other business, state Sen. Michael Moore (D-Millbury) and state Rep. Paul Frost (R-Auburn) gave a presentation on Gov. Deval Patrick's decision to grant in-state college tuition to certain illegal immigrants.
The board asked them to explain the program, which will not effect the grant money coming from the state to Millbury, Moore said.
But contrary to what many residents believe to be a “free education” for certain illegal immigrants, this wasn’t the case, Moore and Frost said. The governor’s plan was to spell out specific criteria for immigrants who arrived in this country before their 16th birthdays and were under 31 to be eligible for the resident in-state tuition rates at the 29 state colleges and universities, Moore said.
There would be no free education, Moore said, only in-state rates for immigrants who were brought to the state early in their lives.
But Frost said he was drafting legislation to bring before the state legislature to overturn the governor’s decision. He was concerned that Massachusetts now appears "soft" on illegal immigration and that this would encourage more illegal immigrants to come to the commonwealth.
More deserving people who are here legally, such as military families stationed in Massachusetts, are not eligible for in-state tuition, Frost said.
Currently, 10 states other than Massachusetts have adopted a rule granting certain illegals in-state tuition rates.