Saturday, May 9, 2015


For years I have listened to Councilors, both past and present, tell me that they listen to what their constituents have to say.  They indicate they vote in favor of the majority of their constituents wishes.  This is the democratic form of government.  However, this is not always the case.

In 2011 I attended a Town Council workshop, in which, Councilor Bickford requested that the Council put on the November ballot the question to see if the people wanted to vote on the Municipal budget annually.  Chairman LaRochelle stated that the question would be put on the ballot as an advisory referendum question and that Council would abide by the results.  The question was placed on the ballot and the results were 2025 voters were in favor of voting on the Municipal budget annual and 514 were against.  However, this is 2015 and the people have never voted on the Municipal budget.  There was no further action taken to allow the people to vote on the Municipal budget.

When the Council was asked as to why the people are not being allowed to vote on the Municipal budget; they were told it was an Advisory Referendum Question and so it was not binding.  It did not matter that the Council agreed to abide by the results or not.

At a Council meeting, I asked Chairman Pesce if the Council would put a binding referendum question on the June ballot so the people can move this along.  Chairman Pesce stated “NO” but will discuss this in July.  To me this is yet another delaying tactic by our Councilors.  This does not need to have a lawyer review this because we can use the same question that was used in November 2011 without the word Advisory in it.  There was and still is sufficient time to get this question on the June ballot.  Below is the way the question was written in November 2011:

Do the voters of the Town of Lisbon wish to vote on an amendment to the Town Charter that, if enacted, would require voters’ approval at a referendum election for each annual Municipal Budget.

YES________ NO________

If the current Councilors actually listen to the people, then there should be no problem getting this referendum question on the June ballot.  However, if our Councilors are only providing lip service to their constituents then it will be delayed again.

Putting this on the June ballot will enable the Council several months to prepare the necessary Charter changes to allow the people the right to vote on the Municipal budget.

Let’s see who care about the peoples wishes.

Larry Fillmore

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