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Let's Talk: What's Your Reaction to the Tax Increase of 2.76%?

A discussion about hot button issues in West Hartford.

West Hartford Patch is launching a new discussion forum that will appear every Wednesday at 1 p.m. We're hoping our readers will join in the conversation and talk about the important issues facing the town.

We launch the feature today with a discussion of the town budget adopted on Tuesday night. The Republican minority on the council offered a number of amendments in an attempt to reduce the 2.76 percent tax rate increase, including reopening contracts for town and school employees to ask them to increase their benefit contributions.

Democrats on the council countered that town employees — including all teachers who accepted a hard wage freeze for next year — have already made significant sacrifices and that opening negotiations was no guarantee of finding savings.

What's your take on this? Is West Hartford pricing itself out of the market by raising taxes or is the town doing the best it can in a difficult economy to preserve the services its known for?

So let's talk. Please add your comments below.

Bob April 29, 2011 at 01:33 AM
All I know for sure is that this change will force a few more of our neighbots, people at the margins for whatever reason, to let their homes fall into disrepair, slowly, and blight will nudge it's way into any neighborhood. Oh well, our elected officials and their counterparts that set these contracts can take a detour around these sights and go on pretending that they deserve much more than 2.7% and their comfort is superior to that of their neighbors.
amystery726 April 29, 2011 at 06:03 PM
I've lived in town since age 7. I've benefited from the wonderful services in town, as have my siblings and their families, as well as my parents. My children have had the pleasure of growing up with amenities and quality educations. We are not wealthy people and live modest lives, but we are glad to pay our taxes for what we get. If we had stayed in NYC, private school tuition alone would have been double (or more) our tax bill. So, yes, you pay for what you get. And I'll gladly pay every penny.
amystery726 April 29, 2011 at 06:04 PM
And, by the way, that is 53 years that I've lived here. And the changes have been great - in fact I think it is a far better town in many ways than when I grew up here.
Bob April 29, 2011 at 06:44 PM
My only point is that there is a portion of those paying their taxes who will not able to afford the increase - to say nothing of the already existing taxes - without decreasing outlays elsewhere. Those of our neighbors who for reasons of age, health, economy or just plain circumstance find themselves in this position will slow or stop maintaining their homes and property and this hurts all of us. What's the choice? Food? Medicine?For what? 2.7% more than last year, which was already more than the year before, and so on. When does shame enter the picture.
Doc M April 29, 2011 at 07:18 PM
the question(s) that remain, are not related to hyperbole of not having a police or fire department. that is ridiculous and reasonable people know that; rather have the elected officials of whatever period of time, ( I have lived here 16 years) year after year been myopic, always assumed nirvana would continue and allow/enable/expenses that could have been managed better, my bias is yes, not to employ so called monday morning quarterback look back, but rather to test our expense per capita, or per other measures, and it reveals we are far more expensive (on the taxpayer back) that other communities who also provide police/fire/parks/library, etc etc.. why ?

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