To The Daily Sun,
Registered voters in the seven towns comprising of the Newfound Area School District should be careful in the voting booth on Election Day, Tuesday March 11th. Whether or not you wanted to increase the proposed budget of the School Budget Committee, it was increased by the majority of those present at the Deliberative Session on February 1. If that action distresses you, don't consider voting against the increased budget, for if the increased budget is defeated in the voting booths of the seven towns, we will be stuck with the default budget that is $319,120 HIGHER than that already increased budget! So hold your nose and vote "yes" on the operating budget given in Article 7 on your School District ballot
We do encourage you to vote "NO" on the Teacher Contract Agreement, Article 2 on your ballot. Over the next three years of this agreement, teachers, on average, will receive raises of $5,000 while only being held responsible for 13 percent of their health insurance. The majority of our district's tax paying residents will not see a raise in salary or Social Security, nor have the luxury of paying 13 percent of health insurance costs. We DISAGREE with this agreement as it does not respect the financial inabilities of most taxpayers.
Slim Spafford & Sherry Nelson
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 March 2014 10:46
To The Daily Sun,
I am writing in support of Steve McCormack for selectman in Gilmanton. I feel we need a strong, independent voice in town.
I have known Steve since we went to Belmont High School in the 1960s. Steve was active in many extra-curricular activities in school. After graduation Steve joined the Army and retired with the rank of major. This in itself speaks of just the type of person Steve is.
Steve's track record as a military man and a senior field representative for the State of New Hampshire Employees Association has provided him with exceptional experience for dealing with people and problems. Steve is intelligent, articulate, energetic, hard-working, great sense of humor and is genuinely good with people. He is respectful of other the person's point of view and wants to research the facts before making a decision. Gilmanton would be well served to have him on the Board of Selectmen.
Steve wants to find ways to bring more business to Gilmanton in order to share the burden of our taxes. In addition, Steve wants to make our town services more efficient by listening to the town employees' ideas as well as our own and to give our residents a reason to be proud of this community. Let's return to our best instincts of community spirit and cooperativeness and elect a man who can help move us in that direction.
Vote for Steve McCormack on Tuesday, March 11.
Paula L. Gilman
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 March 2014 10:42
To The Daily Sun,
Bristol taxpayers do you feel your taxes are too high? According to two elected members of our town government you need look no further than the Newfound Area School District's $21.8-million budget. These two town government members expressed just that sentiment at recent Budget Committee meetings.
In an attempt to set the record straight, I pointed out to one that fortunately Bristol belongs to a seven-town school district, and we are just one of these communities paying our share and our amount of payment to the school district, and our town budget were in fact pretty close in cost to the taxpayers.
Please note Bristol's school district apportioned amount according to the FY2013 MS-24 worksheet from the New Hampshire Department of Education Bureau of Data Management is $5,987,906.
It is also worth noting that the Newfound Area School District's operating budget number for last year was $ 21,775,989. The total proposed operating budget for our consideration this year is $21,802,569 which is a total gross operating budget increase $26,580 over last year.
The Bristol budget as recommended by the Budget Committee in FY2013 was $5,371,156. The FY2014 Budget Committee budget to be presented to the taxpayers at the Town Meeting this year will be $5,466,274 for an increase of $95,118. This increase is a much larger number if you compare it to the actual FY2013 Year-End expended amount which was $ 5,241,113. This basically leaves a surplus of over $200,000 of unspent money to be added to the town's unexpended fund balance.
This $200,000-plus is the amount mentioned in letters you may have read in several local papers recently. If this were a once-in-a-while occurrence I would congratulate all responsible for prudent spending. Some might think that this money might mean there would be extra money for unforeseen issues. But there is a vehicle for such occurrences as the town maintains an unexpended fund balance.
According to NH RSA 32:1 "The purpose of the Budget Committee is to assist voters in the prudent appropriation of public funds."
As stated by some running for elected positions in the town of Bristol, there seems to be a move afoot by some "radicals" to pretty much destroy our town by reckless spending cuts. I can assure you this is not my intention as a Budget Committee member. I, like several fellow members, attempted to address the budget vs. expenditure overages by proposing cuts to allow potential taxation dollars to remain in the hands of the taxpayers. Radical, doesn't seem so to me. We are concerned committee members doing what we are charged to do under the RSA noted above. I felt that this money should be back out into the local economy doing some good instead of sitting in the town coffers.
Because I see this belief in both Paul Manganiello and Andy O'Hara, I wholeheartedly endorse their candidacy for the Bristol Select Board. They will offer and even-keeled, common sense approach to Bristol's business. I also support David Carr and Kevin MacCaffrie for Budget Committee.
William "Bill" Cote
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 March 2014 10:27
To The Daily Sun,
When I read my letter in print today supporting Joe Kenney, I was horrified to see that I had spelled Joe's name wrong. My apologies to Joe and to his family. My only excuse is that I had a lapse of memory due to my age (86 years).
I hope Joe will forgive me. But however you spell Kenney (Kenny, Kenney), he is still the best candidate for the Executive Council for District 1 and he certainly has my vote. Good luck Joe Kenney.
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 March 2014 10:20
To The Daily Sun,
Maintaining the quality of life and fair sharing of cost in our community structure is a very delicate and complicated process. Our Town Planner and Assessing departments in the town of Alton have become very proficient entities in the last six years, through the efforts of our present department heads. The effort to achieve a fair tax sharing structure for all Alton residents and helpful service for all who seek to build or improve their property within the present laws and ordinances of town and state that is valuable to us all. Having and experienced Town Planner on staff enables the average citizen to get the help necessary in developing their planned project legally and with respect for neighbors and the environment we cherish in Alton, without needing to hire expensive consultants and legal counsel. At the same time the Town Planner enables the volunteer Planning Board to be a strong and effective force when dealing with those who might seek to push through projects that would hurt the lifestyle and environmental quality of life that we enjoy here in Alton.
The assessor's office has achieved a high reputation for fair assessing both locally and statewide in creating a fair sharing of the tax burden approved by the voters. In recent years our assessor has received high marks for his professionalism and accuracy from the state inspection office.
If Alton remains competent department heads, we will both save the tax dollars by avoiding legal costs while creating a stable and fair local structure, which we can all be proud of. Let's not turn something that works well for us into a broken, ineffective system that fosters conflict and costs us more money. The best way to limit intrusion of state and Federal interference in our local and personal affairs is to retain quality local government staff. Effective local small government trumps unwanted outside control.
Last Updated on Thursday, 06 March 2014 10:16