Letter: Stand firm by voting no

To the editor,

Thirty-five years ago, my husband and I bought our first and current home in Naugatuck. Naugatuck was a bit further north than we had planned to buy a home but it was affordable and seemed like a nice place to live. Settling into a small ranch in the Indian Hills Area became a great place to raise our son and daughter.

Through the years, I was fortunate to be employed by two not-for-profits in the Borough and my husband experienced firsthand the caring and faithful blessing of the Naugatuck VNA. Volunteering has always been its own reward, as have good neighbors. This community does not hesitate in rallying to support its own.

This is home to us and the home to which our family returns often. I have always spoken highly of Naugatuck and hope to continue to be able to do so.

The issue of major tax increases is not just one for those of us who set down roots many years ago and are now retired. Young couples striving to raise families in Naugatuck are also faced with stretching their finances beyond realistic capability. “For Sale” signs seem to be more and more frequently appearing on the front lawns of all age groups.

As a former teacher, it is the direct interaction between parents and educators in the Naugatuck public school system that support the positive outcomes for our children. It is not the constantly heightened monies poured into the system that create beautifully educated students. It is about the relational bonds formed between teachers, school personnel, parents, and students that build the cornerstone of bright, caring, successful, self-confident, goal-oriented young men and women.

If we believe, as individuals, that there is nothing we can do to speak up about our taxes, that is a fallacy. While not affiliated with the group, I support the referendum hotline (203-806-0588). We can post signs at our homes to get the word out to all taxpayers regarding the July 29 referendum at the Naugatuck Train Station on Water Street, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you need transportation or an absentee ballot, those are also available to support the 15 percent voter turnout required. My vote counts and so does yours.

We all understand that costs rise but, as individuals, we are forced to realistically assess our incomes, our expenses, and our spending habits. I ask that the Borough of Naugatuck leadership do the same regarding expenditures and proposed tax increases for our community. May we communicate with each other and strive for the fairness of good economical decisions that enable individuals and families to remain in their residences.

To have removed the minimal $7,000 from our disabled, senior, and general railway commuters, sends a very loud message regarding the handling of the Borough’s budget and where the basic priorities lie.

Many of those in favor of the current proposed budget will not vote and this includes officials who had a direct impact in originating the proposal. Several have admitted publicly that they will forego their vote so as to defeat the required 15 percent minimum voter turnout for the referendum to be validated. Is this an approach of the utmost character?

God bless our military and others who have protected our honor, privilege and freedom to vote.

We must make every effort to cast our “No — Too High” vote on July 29 for both the municipal and educational budgets. By unifying on Tuesday to turn down the current budget proposal, we will assuredly be proud that we exercise our vote and that we stand firm for Naugatuck, our home.

June Hallden

Naugatuck

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