Local politics doesn't always get proper attention given the impact the decisions local Boards and Commissions have on our lives. We pay attention to state and national races, yet decisions that greatly affect our quality of life in Brookfield are made at the local level.
The Brookfield Democratic Town Committee (DTC) encourages all residents to take an active role in the town's budgeting process happening right now. This is where important decisions are made about where our priorities as a community lie. How can you do this? There are two key ways.
1. Participate in the Annual Town Meeting on May 1
All residents are encouraged to attend the Annual Town Meeting on Tuesday, May 1, at Brookfield High School (BHS) at 7:30 p.m. Two important decisions will be made at this meeting. The date of the budget referendum will be set. The date should be conducive to allowing the most residents to vote, so please come to the meeting and let your preference be known. The question of whether to vote on the budget as a single number or as two separate numbers — one for the town budget and one for the school budget — will also be decided.
A third potential action can be taken at the Town Meeting. A budget line item can be lowered by a vote if 4 percent of eligible voters (about 400 people) are present. With two decisions being made, and the potential of a budget cut happening on the spot, your presence is critical.
2. Vote on the Budget Referendum
We encourage all residents to vote. It is not enough to vote for representatives to town boards. Those Boards look for guidance from residents as they work to represent our needs and wants. If you have ever looked at something in our town — the schools, the roads, a park, a business — and either appreciated it or wished it were different, you know the power of your vote. Your vote makes things happen. Don't let someone else make decisions for you. Vote.
The Democratic Town Committee's Position
The Brookfield DTC fully supports the current budget proposal. We encourage all residents to vote yes. This budget is responsible. It demonstrates that our Boards are working hard to maintain a vibrant community for all, while keeping a sharp eye on the careful management of our town's resources.
The current proposal includes $122,000 that was added back to the Board of Finance's initial proposal. This add-back occurred in response to an outcry of support from residents for the original budgets that the Boards of Selectmen and Education prepared. Residents know that the plans prepared by the Boards of Selectmen and Education maintain vital services. The budget provides an additional police officer, lower class sizes and expanded library services at minimal cost, while keeping our taxes the lowest in our area.
We also support voting on the budget as a single number. We are one community and we believe in voting for one budget.
The budget we will be voting on will provide what our town needs to thrive. The Brookfield Democratic Committee supports this budget. We ask residents to come out and vote yes on referendum day.