To the editor of THE EAGLE:
It is time for the voters of Egremont to take back financial control of their town government.
As a longtime resident, I urge all registered voters to attend the special town meeting at 6:30 p.m. and the regular town meeting at 7 p.m. to be held in the cafeteria of the Mount Everett Regional High School on May 6. The proposed increase of 4.5 percent in spending not including expensive special articles as recommended by the Selectmen will cost us a lot more money if not scrutinized carefully or voted down.
Because of the bellicose actions of the Selectmen and their mishandling of the firing of former Police Chief Reena Bucknell, taxpayers will be saddled with a $20,000 bill to litigate the pending lawsuit in this matter. If the town loses, the financial cost may be great.
To preclude further lawsuits, it is time to vote Selectman Charles Flynn out of office and elect Kevin Zurrin. Zurrin blew the whistle on the water company’s failure to consistently bill its users over a long period of time which has caused all taxpayers to pick up the large operating deficits totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars. To make matters worse, under Article 3, the Selectmen will be asking voters for an additional $110,050 to pay off the WACO’s debt service this year. If this is not voted down we will be paying off the rest of the debt each year for nine years until voters have paid over $900,000 to eliminate WACO’s debt service account.
On Article 6, the motion to adopt the Community Preservation Act, (CPA), please vote NO. This act overrides Proposition 21Ž2 and will cost us a 3 percent adder per thousand on our property tax bill minus the first $100,000 assessment. I don’t feel our town has the management capabilities to run such a diverse program. We can’t even run a financially solvent water company. Please vote NO.
Please defeat Article 8 to raise and/or appropriate $30,000 to cannibalize the town’s useable fire tanker/ pumper into a dump truck for the Highway Dept. If approved, the town will have lost the potential to sell it for some $40,000 to $60,000 if properly advertised in national fire magazines and handled by a competent broker.
An amendment will be offered to see if the town will vote to purchase a useable surplus heavy duty military dump truck with all wheel drive for between $1,000 and $1,500 each (plus delivery if needed,) Dozens of states and towns are grabbing up these bargains as fast as they are released by military downsized units. The Army, Marines and the Air Force are using 32,000 M 939 type highly prized vehicles plus 12 foreign nationals as well.
I wonder what our Egremont Selectmen of our tiny town know that the military doesn’t know?
WILLIAM H. WEIGLE