Saturday, November 22, 2014

Vecchia Pledge Calls For Reduction In Town Budget

Ken O’Brien

At Monday night’s Town Council Meeting Councilor Albert Vecchia read a pledge to reduce departmental budgets by 1%  from current levels during fiscal year 2016.

The pledge cited four specific reasons for its enactment:
     1.      The pressure on residents from increasing water and        sewer rates;
     2.      The imminent expiration of landfill revenues;
     3.      A stagnant commercial tax base;
     4.      Increased out of school placement.

The pledge was signed by Councilors Moriarty, Carrasco, Vandal, and Estrada as well as by Vecchia.

The pledge expanded upon the view that Councilor Vecchia expressed earlier in the evening regarding the town’s free cash. Town Accountant Karen Harnois indicated that free cash had been certified by the State at $1.1 million. Vecchia stated the view that the figure should represent 10% of the town’s budget. As such it should be in the range of $5 million.

In light of the fact that the pledge had been signed by a majority of the Council’s membership, Vecchia stated that the interim Town Manager should be guided by it in the preparation of the FY 2016 budget. He further indicated that the School department should also be directed to adhere to the guideline.

During Councilors Forum both Councilors Steeves and Manna indicated their objection to not being informed of the pledge and stated their opposition to it.


  1. How many households are trailing?

  2. Has any thing "good" ever come out of a landfill?

  3. Today at a local coffee hang out I heard a
    local outspoken Council wannabe make the following claims:
    1. That one of the newly elected councilors was not correct when he stated during the debate that the Industrial Park road has been "already paid for by Casella".
    2_ That the Town of Southbridge has borrowed the money for the Industrial Park Road and that Casella only maKes the payments and that this money is only from tipping fees already promised.
    3. That Southbridge was promised the highest tipping rate in the State by Mr. Bohlig, a Casella executive during the public forum about the landfill deal which makes this new comparison study mute.

    Who is telling the truth?


All comments subject to moderation. All commenters must use their own name or a screen name. No comments labelled as "Anonymous" will be published. To use your name or a screen name select "Name/URL" from the drop down menu. Insert you name in the "Name" space and leave the "URL" space blank.