Thursday, July 10, 2014

A TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE ----------- by Larry Fillmore



The Town Council met last Tuesday for a Workshop to find ways to reduce the tax burden on the people of Lisbon. However, the Council’s efforts are being blocked by the Chairwoman Lisa Ward, who by the way pays NO Real Estate Taxes in this town. Councilor Lunt suggested at the last council meeting to NOT replace any police vehicles this year. Chair Ward passed the suggestion by without taking any action on it. Chairwoman Ward’s primary mission is to approve the police budget without any cuts.

Roger Cote, during Tuesday’s workshop, asked why the department that cost the taxpayers the most was not asked to cut spending. In fact, the Finance Committee did not recommend any cuts in the police budget. Once again, the Chairwoman of the Finance Committee does not pay Real Estate taxes in this town. Also, five of the committee members are former town councilors who for years supported Chief Brooks’ budget year in and year out. Chairwoman Ward tried her best to cut Mr. Cote off during the workshop but Roger Cote held his ground wanting an answer which never came. Instead, Chairwoman Ward order Mr. Cote to leave the workshop, never having to provide an answer to his question.

It is obvious that the police department could cut a minimum of $100,000.00 out of their budget with no impact. Chairwoman Ward during the workshop asked Department Heads to try ay Lnd help reduce their budget and Chief Brooks sat there like a bump on a log. Chief Brooks has one full time Administrative Assistant, and two part-time secretaries; he also has two Detectives and has included over a 5% increase in pay for Dispatchers. Chief Brooks wants to replace three vehicles this year; one had a new engine put in last year and does not need to be replace and the other ones can wait a year. There is no way Chief Brooks will allow any reduction in his police budget because he is not and has never been a team player. He does not care about how much the taxes go up in Lisbon as long as he can retain his empire.

It was spot on when our four real councilors voted down the municipal budget but unfortunately I do not believe that they can make changes as long as Chairwoman Ward refuses to listen to their recommendations. Chair Ward has recommended approving the current budget, with no cuts to the police budget for this year and then the council will work on next year’s budget. This is all well and good but it is the same every year and the police budget continues to grow and nothing is done about it and our taxes continue to rise every year. Our four real councilors have the right idea. The people have suffered enough and this is the year to put a stop to it. I urge the council NOT to pass the budget until $100,000.00 dollars is cut in the police department’s budget.

A Public Office is a Public Trust! Stick to your guns.


Larry Fillmore

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