Existing checks & balances serve Groton well
There is a small group trying to convince the voters of Groton that a budget referendum will save us, our voice and our democracy.
The voice of the people is heard now. Beginning in December, town staff crafts their departmental budgets prior to submitting them to the town manager for review. The manager, based on policy guidance from the elected town council, edits and carefully weighs the needs and priorities of the town. After a public hearing on the budget, your elected council has the opportunity to make further adjustments. Finally, in May, your elected Representative Town Meeting (with membership from both parties mandated) may reduce or approve the council budget.
In contast a budget referendum, as called for in the charter changes, boils down a complex issue to a simple yes or no vote.
Our country is a representative democracy, where we give our voice to those who will spend the necessary time and energy to make wise policy choices for all of us, not just themselves. Perhaps it is not that the voices of the proponents are not heard now, perhaps it is that a majority of the voters have a different voice than theirs?
Carole S. McCarthy
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