Posts from Andy Watts
On page 24 of the merger booklet, there is a question about IBM leaving the Village. I questioned the question. IBM sold to GlobalFoundries in 2015 and the answer to the question in the booklet talks about changes in tax policy driven by the State. It seems to me that the question should be somethingContinue reading “Which taxes are relevant? I believe they all are.”
On page 5 of the merger booklet, it says “Village residents would not longer pay taxes to the Town for services they do not receive.” I had asked that the Selectboard and Trustees document clearly which services Village residents feel they do not receive from the Town or that they should not pay for. IContinue reading “What do Village residents get for their Town tax dollars?”
I’ve already mentioned the Sidewalk District but I also have concerns with the Capital District. The Village has a 5-year capital plan but the district is slated to last 12-years. I have asked several times that a list of projects be shared so that the scope of the district could be understood. I have yetContinue reading “My concerns about the capital district”
In the merger booklet, at the bottom of page 21, it says that the Selectboard can only enact ordinances outside of the Village. This is totally incorrect. The Selectboard has jurisdiction over the entire Town, including the Village. Any ordinance the Selectboard ordains applies the to entire Town unless the Trustees enact their own ordinanceContinue reading “Who has ordinance jurisdiction?”
On page 22 of the merger booklet, there is a justification for the Sidewalk District. It says “The sidewalks needed to be plowed throughout the Village so that all the kids could walk to school. That practice continues to this day because it is the level of service Village residents expect and pay for andContinue reading “My concerns about the sidewalk district”
A 48-page “Greater Essex” merger booklet was sent to all Essex addresses. It was thrown together in a hurry and I believe some of its contents need additional comment and/or clarification. On page 5, there is a comment that the Village will have lower taxes, temporarily. I asked for clarification of this and did notContinue reading “Merger booklet comments”
Regarding any savings associated with merger, that has not been a primary focus. The focus has been to maintain high quality of service to all residents which many involved in developing the merger plan have interpreted to mean maintaining the same high level of service. There are no plans to eliminate any personnel upon merger.Continue reading “Any savings from merger?”
Aye, drunken sailors might our elected officials be, but no Essex Town budget was ever implemented without the consent of the governed. In the past, this has entailed a couple hundred voters (if we were lucky) stating “Aye” or “Nay” at our Annual Meeting in the Essex High School auditorium. This past November, Town votersContinue reading “Spending like drunken sailors”
This is in response to a question about why taxes will increase as a result of merger and if the questioner’s understanding of my prior post is correct. I will answer the latter first. Yes, the increase is cumulative adding up to a couple thousand dollars over 13 years and, yes, this is effectively aContinue reading “Why is there a tax increase for TOV?”
Sometimes a good deed results in unintended consequences. Sometimes those consequences are bad, sometimes they are good, sometimes they are in the eye of the beholder. A number of years ago, I was spading our garden to get it ready for planting. My neighbor was doing his garden with a rented rototiller and, when heContinue reading “Horseradish”
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