To the editor:
This week, I had the opportunity to view the "Meet the Candidates" night on TV and what I watched motivated me to write this letter in support of Francis T. Corcoran, Patrick Brennan, Don Scott and Lee Roberts.
During the Q & A, Deputy Supervisor David Gabrielson mentioned using the town’s reserves as a possibility for staying under the 2 percent tax cap. His rationale for dipping into the reserves was as follows: “It’s the appropriate thing, it's the taxpayers’ money and we should spend it.” Gabrielson’s first thought was not to look for ways to decrease the growth rate of spending, or to look for ways to actually decrease taxes. His instinct was to find more money to spend.
The only individual on the panel Thursday night that referenced not only preventing the growth of taxes, but actually cutting them, was Don Scott. Repeatedly, Chris Burdick and Gabrielson talked about the importance of “transparency” in government.
During the summer, a decision to vote on a contract for the blue collar workers in the town was scheduled by the board. The contract was placed on the town website for voters to view on a Thursday and a vote was scheduled for the following Tuesday. This allowed for only a few days to read, understand and question the contract. The only reason the vote was delayed was because a large group of taxpaying citizens showed up to voice their concern.
Wherever you stand on the contract that was ultimately agreed on, a decision of that consequence where taxpayers are on the hook in both the short and long term, warrants more than a few days notice.
Brennan, who is running against Burdick for town supervisor, addressed the need for “proactive, positive, and bipartisan” leadership for our local government to run effectively. My challenge to everyone eligible to vote this November, is to watch the candidate forum. While watching, ask yourself, who up on that stage seems most willing to work with everyone? Who seems most willing to put a desire to improve the lives of everyone in each Hamlet before his or her party affiliation? Who are the visionaries, who will have the ability to see what the Town of Bedford can be instead of what it cannot be?
After watching, it was clear to me.
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