Letter: Tax collector urges ‘No’ vote on revisions

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To the editor,

Prospect voters beware. The proposed Charter changes that appear on the Nov. 8 election ballot will drastically change the dynamics of the Town of Prospect’s administrative services.

For the past 27 years, it has been my honor to be held accountable by the voters in performing my duties as tax collector and asking for your continued support every two years. The proposed change to make the positions of the tax collector, town clerk and treasurer appointed rather than elected would change the accountability from the voters to those elected officials who would appoint the positions. Whoever the mayor is in the future, “with the majority vote” of whoever the nine members of the Town Council are (which could change every two years) will determine future appointments to these positions. Do not give up your right to hold each of these offices accountable to every voter.

While there may be some updates that should be made within the proposed revisions, there are added phrases like “with the majority vote of the Town Council” and “the Mayor shall seek the consent of the Town Council for the appointment of officers” (referring to administrative services) that will diminish the powers of the mayor. I’m concerned that based on political affiliations and personality conflicts, we could begin to see changes in the cooperation of various administrative offices and the Town Council.

Prospect voters put their faith in those who are elected to perform the duties of their respective offices in accordance with Connecticut State Statutes and our current Charter. Prospect voters have the ability to remove those elected officials every two years if they do not perform their duties. We do not need an additional layer of accountability that will likely increase the cost of services. Vote “No” to the Charter revisions.

Diane M. Lauber

Tax Collector

Prospect