Town Council Holds Budget Workshop


Tuesday the Wolcott Town Conucil held a workshop to review its budget. The newspaper had an article the next day saying “Police and Fire Budgets Criticized”. The headline was overstated the cordial discussion that actually transpired. Present that night were the nine members of the Town Council, Mayor Dunn, Superintendant Macary, both the business and finance managers of the Board of Education and Town, Town Clerk Debbie Slater, and one member of the public. There are no minutes kept at this meeting because it is a workshop and the rules for discussion are more informal than if it were a regular meeting. This allows for more open discussion and questioning between Council members and those in the audience with particular expertise, particularly the business and finance managers.

The reporter arrived just after an opening statement by Chairman Mark Wagner, and left just before perhaps the most important discussion of the meeting dealing with the balancing of the budget.

The first half of the discussion included areas explored for clarification in the Town budget. Some members asked if certain items could be cut or eliminated in such a tough economic year. These included delaying the purchase of a fire truck, police cruisers. As reported, the fire engine at Co. 1 has difficulty getting up to reasonable speed even on a straight roadway. The Fire Department also has a lease on equipment which shifts from one unit to the other as they are replaced or refurbished. One question was asked about the library repairs, which need to be done this year. Some minor line items were examined with the Emergency Planning Commission and those likely will be only lines to be reduced.

As reported, Dave Gentile suggested that the town look at how we spend computer funding. Only recently has the town had an official website, e-mails, and various offices have been interlinked by a new server in the past year or so. There’s still quite a bit of work to do to upgrade the town website and to allow things such as GPS of assessment records. The Board of Education has on site tech support which he hope to work with in the future so that we can make informed and enhanced improvements. One of the enhancements to the Town websites is the ability to look up meeting minutes. The website is www.wolcottct.org. The Board of Education has a website at www.wolcottps.org .

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