The Municipal Budget Committee will be discontinued. Our current Board of Selectmen have acted to keep expenses down, but voters will no longer get assurance from an independent body that the Town budget and appropriation articles are prudent expenditures.
The Budget Committee is indeed an independent body. But, that is also part of the reason for not having it. I mean no disrespect to those who have served on the Budget Committee. Remember, the Charter Commission has 3 current Budget Committee members. The Charter Commission also has a recent former Chairman of the Budget Committe on it. This change was not done lightly and not done without research and discussion.
The final budget the voters see at the Deliberative session is the Budget Committee's budget.
This means a body that is NOT directly accountable for the day-to-day activities of government and does NOT have to live within the means of a budget, gets to propose the final budget to the Voters.
How many Budget Committee members have lamented that they do not get to make a real impact to the Budget because the dynamics of the Budget Committee prevents real action of the Committee?
The Charter makes the governing board directly responsible to the Voters for the budget. There is no "body" in the middle to shield the Board of Selectmen or Town Council.
Pass the Charter and we will never hear a Councilor (Selectman) say it is not "my" budget; it is the Budget Committee's budget. The tapes of the recent of BOS workshops on the budget will show these words were uttered at least twice that I saw.
The Charter holds the Governing Board directly responsible to the Voters. This restores power.