Tax revolt or just revolting? A yes vote is key.

If you want kids to sit in more crowded classrooms, vote no.

If you want to gut our gifted and talented program, vote no.

If you want to see kindergarten hours cut in half, vote no.

If you want to see services slashed and programs pared, vote no.

But if you want to see the traditional commitment to good schools continued, vote yes. And get your friends, neighbors, relatives, co-workers and everyone you run across to turn out at the polls Tuesday and vote yes along with you.

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18 Comments

Filed under budget, education, News, referendum, Schools

18 responses to “Tax revolt or just revolting? A yes vote is key.

  1. Susan Grantham

    If you want community members who have children in schools to stay vote no because otherwise these taxes are far too high for most families. My taxes are increasing by 25 % in the first year. Get rid of the fluff in the budget and the school programs can remain intact, retired people can continue to live here and there will not be an exodus of the very people you want as neighbors. Get all of your neighbors to vote no!

  2. Joe Visconti

    Well Said Susan
    The sky is not falling if the budget gets shot down, the leadership Council which I usually target as out of touch did a good job of setting the benchmark to save taxpayers money in this terrible perfect storm where ECS failures met reval and 4.5% teacher raises (Is that correct turtle, Judy?).
    If the Budget does in fact get shot down, the Town Council will most likely cut just below $1,000,000.00, sending a clear message to Education and the Town side that employees are going to have to really step up performance where ever they can in the future or face very small annual pay increases when contract time comes back around.
    No matter what happens tommorrow, be happy you have a home, people that love you and food on the table.
    Peace

  3. Wow Susan… great post… and…

    Thanks, at least someone else on here “gets it”.

    All this support for an out of control budget is mindboggling. And the scare tactics being used by advocates of this bloated budget are evening more alarming. This sounds like the Clinton campaign of 1992…. dying old people, hurting children… blah, blah, blah.

    The problem is antiquated thinking (and I mean this of everyone). Since when did throwing money at every freaking problem that comes along ever solve anything? When did “its too hard” become a substitute for real work? Its not necessarily that our leaders are weak-kneed, they simply agree with the teacher’s union and all other unions because they wouldn’t dare buck their political base.

    And at the end of the day, you are right. The middle class will pack up and leave – if for nothing else – an opportunity to buy a four bedroom home for less than half a million dollars. Let the billionaires move in along with the poor (who pay nothing) and the older folks – who due to no fault of their own – having nothing to give. Sounds like a recipe for disaster.

    Apparently, we middle class homeowners with families have few options left.

    And there are some in this town who would just love to pretend that this is Fairfield County. Good luck.

  4. WH Alum

    We are very middle class, 2 working parents, hanging on tight to our 4 bedroom home, and intend to stay here because we like what this town has to offer.

  5. Gary Reger

    After the last budget referendum a few years ago, which lost, there was no mass exodus from West Hartford. In my neighborhood those years have seen rather an influx of young middle-class people with (or about to have) small children, and all my neighbors who left did so regretfully, for reasons having nothing to do with the tax rate. The rhetoric of apocalypse is just that — rhetoric.

    I’m voting yes.

  6. Joe Visconti

    Well King, Pseudonym Forgiven

    Listen folks most people who live in West Hartford that I know are smart bargain shoppers, even if they are buying a Porsche. When was it decided by the Mythmakers that you can’t get a great Education without breaking the Bank? How many remember the Old West Hartford schools? Not much has changed except more unfunded mandates and bureaucracymania.
    The Political Will to demand our money from the State is all it will take to keep taxes affordable, but where is Andy Fleischman, Jonathan Harris, Beth Bye or David McKlusky? Will they continue to go the way of Kevin Sullivan who gave us mumbo Jumbo ECS rhetoric and didn’t get it done when at the Top of the Senate?

    Most don’t like blame games but when will we have leaders who lead so we don’t have to play blame games? When will we get represented at the State Level so the local leaders are not caught in a whirlpool of competing priorities only to escape to get caught in the undertow of the Educational Cartel demands in the next wave.

    It is time for all of us to Vote No tommorrow and put our foot down even though the Town Council will never cut more than a Million dollars if the Budget is defeated.
    The ECS Check from the State isn’t in the Mail but the New 1/5th Phase in on top of the 06 numbers will be soon, and next years Higher taxes with the second 5th phase in from this year on top to boot.

    Vote NO tommorrow and sleep well tommorrow night knowing you drove a hard bargain and got the best deal you could for the 07 West Hartford Cadillac with maybe cashback of a Million Bucks!

  7. Dan Rosenthal-Baxter

    I am not sure why Susan’s taxes are going up so precipitously, and I do not know what she bases her statement on. Perhaps her house has been undervalued relative to the rest of us and is now being brought in line with its real value. If so I envy her investment savy! Or perhaps she has an issue with the valuation of her specific property or she has made improvements which she will now be taxed on. This would be a drag for her, but If you make your house more valuable your taxes do, unfortunately, go up. I think the idea is that if we can afford the improvements we also need to afford a concommitantly higher tax bill. Selling an old car and buying a brand new one did the same thing to our taxes a while back. I can’t say I liked it, but, we realy wanted a new car, sooooo… we were willing to take on a bigger tax bill along with five years of car payments. Most property values around town have risen at rates sufficiently similar that unless Susan has made some substantial improvements beyond standard upkeep of a property she would not be seeing a 25% increase in her tax bill in the first year, or any other year. The overall increase in valuations across town brings the tax values more in line with real world market values and helps even out glitches arising from substantial improvements to individual properties which were heretofore not accounted for in tax bills, and any other market forces, such as increased interest in water views etc. which may have caused some properties to rise in value at a significantly higher rate than most of us have enjoyed.

    If someone is seeing a substantial increase in their property tax it is because their property, for whatever reasons, has increased in value in excess of the norm. The good news is that if this “horrible ” fate has befallen you, you are now sitting on more assets than you perhaps realized, which is not a wholly bad thing.

    The overall increase in the current school budget is modest and significantly lower than last year’s increase of 6.5 %. The cost of things has gone up for us as individuals and for us as a community. There will always be people who oppose any tax increase no matter what it is for and no matter how much or how little it is. Personally I wish we could vote on the price of oil and gas. Now that might bring significant relief! Trying to raid our schools or blame our neighbors is foolish, petty and ultimately self destructive. The same increasing real estate values that so many of us enjoy and hope to continue to enjoy won’t be there if the town loses its reputation. Our exemplary schools and community services have drawn people to this town for generations. I know. That’s why my own parents moved here forty four years ago when I was one and a half. That’s why we want to stay here and raise our own family here. I hope one day our children will feel the same. Please vote YES on June twelfth, for all of us.

  8. WH Alum

    Great points, Dan.

    We did make major improvements and our value raised significantly – and still our increase is 6.5%. I’m really not understanding why some people’s are – or at least they think they are – jumping so drastically.

  9. Joe Visconti

    Delphi techniques at it’s best Dan. Doesn’t work though, next year you will see a new budget increase plus phase in 2 on top, oops but that’s after the Municipal election and the Blue Back parade. Gonna get 3 more Republicans in with chutzpah by then so not to worry.One of them may be me and if so I will make sure you see the whole enchilada way in time before the next budget cycle. The Orkin Man Cometh!

  10. turtle

    Since our assessment went up a whopping 110%, I was jittery about our tax bill. Well, we got Mr. Francis’s letter. All the Sturm und Drang over this? And we can expect a lower car tax bill. Sheesh.

    Do the right thing by West Hartford. Vote YES!

  11. Another WH Teacher

    Joe –
    “and 4.5% teacher raises (Is that correct turtle, Judy?)”

    No it is not correct – the correct figures for the 3-year contract are: 2.7, 2.4, and 3.0. The coming year is the lowest of the increase in teacher salaries.

  12. EJ

    Gee, nowe who’s just throwing out numbers.
    At the April BOE meeting we were talking to one of the Board members about the raises. We had just congratulated him on keeping the raises to 3%, as specified in the BOE Budget. We were then informed the raises were 4.5% (that was from the horses mouth) and you had to go to anotheer section of the budget to see the full raise.

    That is part of the problem, they have stuff spread all over the budget and it becomes totally incomprehensable after awhile.

  13. Joe Visconti

    When in doubt Vote NO!!!!

  14. Another WH Teacher

    My numbers came direct from the WHEA office (teacher’s union – go ahead Joe – give it your best). I will double check and find out where the 4.5% could be coming from.

  15. Joe Visconti

    Teacher teacher I declare
    You’ve got that Union Cartel stare
    I thought that binding arbitration was
    A law they passed to replace gauze
    No matter what the old folks say
    I like my teachers highly paid
    Oh teacher look I’ve raised my hand
    I must protect your pension plan
    I’ll go to speak at City Hall
    And read some words to make them ball
    I’ll cry don’t take my schools away
    I want my magnets here to stay
    The bleeding hearts can lend a hand
    To raise the taxes for our Band
    The PTO can help as well
    Those old folks all can go to hell
    I want a ride to school each day
    I want my Ipod and more clay
    I want to make sure I am smart
    I need more taxes and Head Start

  16. Peter G.

    Yep, you’ve hit it right on the head, Joe. Those selfish young people just want a decent education. Especially the growing number of young people in West Hartford who didn’t grow up with all the advantages, who need every bit of help they can get, and who don’t give a damn whether some old folks have to choose between paying their property taxes and buying this year’s Mercedes SUV.

  17. Joe Visconti

    No the kids are just being gamed by the Education Cartel shills for teachers who will not give back a nickel, Read the Fishwrap from last week how Susan Daly Et al said notta. Real kick is the teachers don’t even work a full year for their salary, they are out making some more during the summer when they are not in college getting PHD’s for extra pay! Cut the budget again!!!! 41 minutes till showtime!!

  18. WH Alum

    I can afford the taxes, not the Mercedes – this year’s or otherwise!

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