The Town referendum is to be held on April 11, and it is important, no matter which side of the budget discussions you fall on, to come out and vote.
Our First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker makes a very strong case for voting in a consistent way for both the Town and School budgets as our charter locks in the School budget once it passes regardless of the status of the Town budget - up to roughly 20% of which is also tied to the schools.
We wish less was being made of the debt service as it is essentially a return to prior year levels, and the argument that it is a huge increase, while true when put against a recent one year drop, runs counter to past trends and amounts.
While we sympathize with residents and businesses who keep seeing tax increases and fee increases that far outpace rates of inflation, we believe that simply voting down the budget at this stage is more akin to tossing fuel at a fire than crafting a coherent strategy to contain costs and lower tax burdens.
After the budget vote has been settled, we hope to see a clear-eyed, no nonsense discussion of how best to continue to meet essential services, improve our schools and still slow or reduce the rate of fee and tax increases.