If you didn’t watch last night’s Selectmen’s meeting there was a moderate amount of discussion on the Operating budget, essentially a sell job by the Selectmen and Fred. At one point the Town Manager, in conjunction with spinning the proposed Operating Budget as a “Bare Bones Budget”, stated that he cut the Budget by a couple of million and the Selectmen also cut the budget by a couple of million, he may have said $2 million. The Town Manager’s comments are so far from the truth that they can accurately be described as pure fantasy and a violation of the public trust.
The facts associated with the budget process, based on the attached document which I believe was distributed by the Finance Director to the Budget Committee, are as follows:
- The Department Heads asked for an increase of $2,539,226 or 9.9%.
- The Town Manager reduced it by $709,853, primarily by moving proposals for adding staff into Warrant Articles, some of which the Selectmen eliminated.
- The Selectmen’s proposed budget of $27,515,033 was actually a $65,151 increase over the Town Manager’s proposed budget.
- The final budget on the Warrant, proposed to the voters in conjunction with the Lang amendment at Deliberative Session, is $27,151,600. This is essentially the Selectmen’s budget adjusted downwards for a $363,000 LGC health insurance rate reduction and is a $1,531,091 or 6% increase over 2014.
Note: at the time of this publication, Town Manager has not published the video of the Selectmen’s meeting of March, 2 2015!