It might be a good time to hear from or about Allan Walker, Republican TC endorsed candidate – information about Allan from another party or himself presenting his views. We will strictly enforce “Candidates’ Rules” given on the right. Many are thirsting for a better candidate. Admin
Newcomer, I’ve been looking into these issues for the past year and a half and I still don’t have a good idea of what goes on in this town. Our government is opaque, our elected officials play their decisions close to the chest and no one seems to be forthcoming with posting unedited hard data in an easy to access location.
We as a town need to hash out the issues and come to a conclusion where we want to spend our limited resources and elect public officials whom we feel are most likely to do that. In order for that to happen two things must exist.
1) There must be an open forum for people to get together and discuss the issues in a candid manner. The Cafe has been serving in that capacity for me and it is probably about as good as we can currently get.
2) Have information about what our leaders think, what they are doing, what they plan to do. This includes full board minutes, budgets, actual spending, communication from our leaders on what they are doing and why. This has been a major problem. Without this information the effectiveness of our open forum, as you have noticed, is greatly diminished.
In order for our democracy to work we need to be informed voters. But what can you do when you feel that you are not being informed? In my opinion this is inexcusable given today’s technology. With people working away from town and long hours it is not reasonable to expect that they are going to be able to run out to all the board meetings. It is, however, reasonable for our elected officials to disseminate that information to us. With current technology you could say that it is almost trivially easy for them to do.
We now have a nice new web site that I still can’t seem to find all the budgets and actuals on. I still don’t know exactly what our first selectman is doing about the salt shed or what other issues she is thinking about because she certainly isn’t making any of that information easy for me to find. We’re not just talking about the selectman, but I want all the boards to be this open and the WA as well. If they want to exist on public funds then they can let the public know in detail how their money is being spent.
So in the next election what will I be thinking about? In a word, transparency. Unfortunately John was the only candidate talking about it and he is not longer in the race for first selectman (BOE instead I now hear). So who of the current batch is going to be more open and indeed encourage an atmosphere of openness in our town government? I don’t know but from the last few years I do have a good idea of who it isn’t.
So you, like me, are having a hard time getting a grasp on the issues even though you are putting in a concerted effort. As far as I’m concerned that gives me an idea of what issue I do have a good handle on, transparency. That’s what I want to see now. Without that, all other issues are just not easily defined, analyzed or decided. Most of what we have is partial information and our biases. Hopefully your neighbors realize their conclusions are mostly non-sequiturs due to nothing more than a lack of information. Let’s at least fix that and see where it leaves us.