Despite a brief and unsuccessful attempt to eliminate the school district’s requested 0.34 percent budget increase, the Legislative Council unanimously voted to send a budget plan to referendum representing the first tax rate decrease in memory.
On April 1, the council endorsed a 2015-16 budget proposal of $111,730,513, representing a 0.6 percent spending increase over the current year.
Legislative Council Chair Mary Ann Jacob told The Newtown Bee following a March 4 meeting that a public hearing on the proposed 2015-16 budget, originally planned for March 18, is now going to be held a week later on Wednesday, March 25.
Ms Jacob said that based on the anticipated timing of budget actions at the Board of Finance, the council would need the extra week to properly and legally notice the public hearing. The council still plans to hold a regular meeting March 18, Ms Jacob said.
The Legislative Council moved a package of ordinance requests to its Ordinance Committee February 18. Those requests come from the Police Commission and the Board of Selectmen.
First Selectman Pat Llodra told her board the night before about the amendment to the local Firearms Ordinance, and another suggestion designed to prevent the littering of unsolicited mail and materials being left at residential properties.
This report was updated January 23 with details on the Board of Finance budget meeting schedule.
Facing several television crews and reporters from a number of news bureaus, the Legislative Council quickly and unanimously voted January 21 to authorize the Board of Selectmen to move forward with plans to demolish the home of 12/14 shooter Adam Lanza.
The Legislative Council approved the transfer of $29,000 from contingency to contractual services last month to cover cleanup costs for private property at 31 Great Hill Road. A 3,400-square-foot home there was destroyed by fire, June 24, 2011. Neighbors have complained for three years about the unsightly mess, saying it attracts vermin, wildlife, and poses a safety hazard because of an uncovered and rain-filled swimming pool on the property. Demolition was completed last week.
There is a certain subset of Newtown inhabitants who don’t need signs or maps to identify Church Hill Road. They see the churches from stone steps to spires, and their own heart rates and respiration tell them it is a hill. They are sidewalk walkers. We see them every day from our office perch on the eastern slope of Church Hill within earshot of the snap of the town’s famous flag — just below where the sidewalk ends. Unfortunately, it is not the magical and poetic place made famous in every child’s imagination by Shel Silverstein.
After many, many hours of work by Legislative Council Ordinance Chair Ryan Knapp and his colleagues, several information forums on the proposal, and a sparsely attended public hearing, the full council unanimously approved an upgraded senior tax relief program May 7.