To The Daily Sun,
I recently listened to the first airing of the Belknap County Delegation's discussion of the 2014 Belknap County budget. (The delegation consists of elected state reps, majority Republican and is chaired by Rep. Colette Worsman-R.) Most of the hour showed differences of opinion on using or not the subcommittee process of the past. Rep. David Huot-D supports the subcommittee process, and when a motion was made he clarified that the wording included "may or may not include subcommittees." This clarification was needed because Chair Worsman, calling for the vote, asserted that it could just include "no subcommittees."
She so clearly wants to hasten on to the cuts, that Rep. Ian Raymond-D said, "We need to have subcommittee meetings to give the department heads a chance to plead their case before the executioner's axe comes down on their department budgets."
I sympathize with our hard working county department heads, for Worsman, sitting in charge, seems the classic tyrant, a la Alice in Wonderland's awful queen.
This same Republican majority once before cut, cut, cut the state budget, shifting those costs to the counties and towns. Still powerful in the county budget process, they now insist on cutting funds needed for adequate services to our citizenry, including: correctional facility, county attorney's office, human services department, registry of deeds, youth services, nursing home, and our sheriff''s department. Also auxiliary agencies: Cooperative Extension, Conservation District, Economic Development Council, Genesis, Community Action Programs, and Lakes Child Advocacy.
One newspaper reports that our county's credit rating is now the lowest it's ever been, after last year's budget cuts.
We need moderate people to serve our county, sensible representatives. "To serve" certainly is a special phrase and an important role requiring good judgment skills. Rather than have our county stunted to the detriment of our citizenry, it could be supported and thrive, with moderate representatives at the helm.
Lynn Rudmin Chong