At its Aug. 13 session, the Town Council will make the final vote on the next year’s budget. Expect a huge negative outcry from residents, both those that read The Times and those who frequent social media.
There will be cries of outrage about new fees and increases in the sales tax and endless comments on cutting costs and criticisms about the mayor and council and their inability to manage a proper budget. Unfortunately, it seems that the most noise comes from the least informed. It is time for people to understand that if you enjoy drinking milk then you must pay for feeding the cow.
There were two very good articles in The Times for July 17. The first talks about having things we cannot pay to maintain, such as the very popular Splash Pad. I would suggest that is simply the tip of the iceberg. The most important article gives a history of police and fire protection and how we got where we are today. What it does not say is how much it cost the town. I am certain it was significant, particularly as it was incurred as revenue was trending down.
There were issues of concern regarding the protection/environmental fee. First, it is difficult to enforce payment and unfair to some whose homes/business were on more than one parcel. Steps have been taken to collect these fees and improve collection on fines and judgments from the local court and I have been assured that the inequities have been identified and corrected. By the way, the contract with MCSO does not include an annual increase of 14 percent, it is more like 4 percent with add-ons for excess services.
The town has cut spending to the bone, reducing head count and deferring maintenance needs. Support your town!