To The Daily Sun,
Can someone tell me just how this works?
After reviewing the official minutes from Bristol's 2016 Town Meeting two things became clear:
First, Article 12: "To see if the town will vote to raise and appropriate the sum of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000) to fund the cost of a comprehensive wage and classification study for town positions."
This Article was soundly defeated by a ballot vote of; YES: 6 No: 137.
There was no further amendment and no action to authorize a comprehensive wage and classification study.
Next, Deputy Fire Chief Chris Dolloff presented an amendment to increase the budget bottom line by $75,203. to fund pay increases. This was defeated on a voice vote.
To sum up, there was no enabling legislation and no appropriation for pay raises approved by the town voters.
In spite of this the Selectboard, in August proceeded to conduct its own "Pay Study" and grant a 15 percent pay increase to town employees.
This is not to disparage any of our town employees — most are dedicated professional people — but who is looking out for the taxpayer and property owner?
When asked, one selectman stated that he and one of the new selectman were never provided with a copy of the so-called "pay study" prior to the 3-to-2 vote. To be fair, Selectman Manganiello and Morrison voted against these raises. Selectmen Alpers, Lagueux and Dion voted for it.
This extralegal pay raise and payroll overhead cost the Bristol taxpayers approximately $90,000 this year and $364,032 in the 2017 budget year.
Thank you Selectpersons Alpers, Lagueux and Dion.
Hold on taxpayers there's more; wait until you see the price tag on the new regional police station.