• Vote no on city/school budgets
    March 01,2013
     

    Vote no on city and school budgets

    We’re No. 1!

    We’re No. 1 in taxes, that is. Barre will be officially (after town meeting) the highest-taxed city in the state of Vermont.

    Doesn’t that make you feel all warm and fuzzy? It doesn’t? Perhaps it’s that over-$200 increase in next year’s tax bill that’s giving you that queasy, unsettled gut.

    So, $200 isn’t all that much? Well, it’s double last year’s increase and more than double any increase we’ve ever had.

    This year, the award for callousness has to go to the school board, which believes that its massive spending increase is “reasonable.” I suppose that the members think we all forgot the debacle last year when they totally lost track of their accounting. Perhaps they use the same practices that the city does — like giving a new contract (including a hefty pay hike) to the police/fire chief before last year’s budget was even voted in and shuffling money hither and yon to cover our bills (i.e., using the water and sewer department fund to buy $800,000 worth of firetrucks).

    I especially liked that move. I get to pay twice to fund the Fire Department — once through taxes, and again by diligently paying my water bill. It does tend to get confusing. And how accustomed we’ve become to that — too accustomed.

    The solution? No on the school budget, and no on the city budget.

    Christopher Maloney

    Barre

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