I try to stay in the loop, especially when it comes to financial issues. From the newspaper, I knew that as a town we were going to be hit hard with higher utility bills and it all came true. A couple of nights ago, there was a special Town Hall meeting to address this issue - so many were not prepared for their bills to double or more.
I had some questions and found the meeting very informative. Seems we have some very hefty repairs and maintenance to be done and not enough in the town reserves. We aren't in crisis yet...but there is a cap on how much debt we can carry and with skyrocketing construction costs, how best do we address this issue.
Despite some folks saying it was gross mismanagement by town council, I feel its more a case of short sightedness. I seen a similar reaction when Base Housing had to adjust housing prices to fair market value in order to finance their infrastructure upgrades.We can continue the way we are, with our heads in the sand but you know if you are residing here for the long run, it's gonna cost us all more in the long run.
I can hardly wait for the next town meeting to see which way they are going to go. Some say borrow all the money now while we know the interest rates and get it all done, others want things back to the way it was before - head in sand syndrome- others want to attract more industry to our small town in order to get the big tax dollars. The answer lays in a collective effort - we need to keep our town a great place to live, especially with all our seniors, but still maintain the infrastructures.
So my ~$50/month bill has ballooned to +$100. You can bet I'll be checking for running faucets while brushing teeth, leaky taps and/or checking out a low flush toilet. And when it's a bit warmer...all 3 of my rain barrels will be in service! I'm watching the pennies so the dollars won't be such a worry when the next bill arrives.