Sunday, February 07, 2010

Council agenda - February 9, 2010

Here's the agenda for Tuesday's meeting:Some thoughts...

With regard to items 7A & 7B, I expect to remain consistent with prior years. I expect to support the senior tax credits, but not the tax freeze. The tax credits can achieve much the same goal with less administrative effort. Additionally, at some point in the not-so-distant future there is the distinct possibility of someone losing eligibility for the tax freeze. And the "cliff" that is being created by the freeze is very concerning to me.

For instance, if the freeze limit is currently $35,000 and a senior makes $34,000 for a number of years... then taxes remain frozen. But if a dividends or interest kick in sometime soon, then a senior could make $36,000 the next year. And if the taxes have been frozen for five years, then it's entirely possible that taxes will jump from $3,000 to $4,000 in one year. And that could be a huge problem.

On the other hand, the "cliffs" in the tax credit program are much more measured. The Council has much more control over them. For these reasons I favor the credits, but not the freeze.

With regard to item 7J, I'm concerned about a conflict of interests. To whom does the Clerk of the Council report? In years past, the Clerk of the Council reported exclusively to the Council. More recently, the Clerk has reported to both the Council and the Manager. I view this as a conflict of interests. To whom does the Clerk report? IMO, this conflict needs to be eliminated.

With regard to item 14, the Council may finally conclude the first of five union contracts - police, dispatchers, library, public works & town hall. I'm looking forward to concluding these contracts, particularly since they all expired on June 30, 2009.

Finally, no word yet on the report from the CPD consultant fact-finder.

Tim White


Anonymous said...

Regarding your vote on the senior tax freeze. Many seniors would welome an increase in income by way of dividends etc. Most of these people have to live off of this. I'm sure that if they made more they would not mind paying their fair share as they have done in the past. Remember some of these programs are for seniors who have lived in town a long, long time and have paid taxes for 40-70 years. Give them a break. I don't understand your logic but admire you for being consistent on your vote.

Anonymous said...


With regard to your concerns with a freeze what is the likelihood of a great number of people being effected by this fortunate turn of events in their economic fortunes. Probably the likelihood they win a million in the CT lottery. I think you are drawing a very fine line on senario with little if any impact for the community.

I would ask that you quantify your concerns on paper with a 10 year impact statement for self instruction. Remember...they are still paying some taxes not no taxes at all. If you care to share the number with the rest of us before your vote so be it. By the way...I haven't done this either...I'm making a judgment and who may be able to knock me off my soapbox.

Breachway said...

How about when they reach 70.5 and need to take their minimum distribution? What if they decided they were sick of getting zero return on their savings accts and started to invest for dividends? what if they see for the first time that their money markets can lose value and invest in some type of dividend producing instrument? what if they have recvd stock options as part of their benefit program and they need to start exercising them or losing them when they turn 65?...these are all things that are going on with my mom right now who is an ex factory worker and never made over 32k in her life....its real....its possible

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Breachway said...

Hi 10:16,

I am fine, how are you. I am well aware of the income limits. For what its worth, she is well below the single limits. So if these things bump her up @ 2k this yr, do you think they affect people who are up near the income limit? That was my only point.
- you obviously have something going on in your life that is eating away at you. Good luck with it.

Anonymous said...

Tim, Comments that keep appearing like 10:16 should be deleted. They are rude and inappropriate. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and we're not all going to agree. I know you're busy, Tim, but can you clean them up when you get a chance?