But, I felt I had something to say, something to add to the conversation, so I got home from work and wrote out my comments. Hubby helped me with the first draft and after two more edits, I was ready to go. The chambers were crowded, although a few empty seats remained. The town administrator went through a 65 slide power point presentation on the budget for the next fiscal year.
Like many communities, expenses keep rising, but the revenue has fallen flat. Our town depends heavily on property tax revenue and our current tax rate was set in 2002. The tax rate has been adjusted down a few times so that the town doesn't benefit from the county property reappraisals. With most businesses, the biggest share of the budget is consumed by personnel costs. Police and Fire are the biggest chunk of that.
I spoke in favor of increasing the property tax rate. Only one person there spoke against it. The rest of the 10 speakers also saw the need to step up and solve this issue now.
I felt I delivered my comments well, but the biggest compliment was when one of the 'old' town gentleman said during his turn at the podium that 'the young lady in the pink sweater' stole his thunder and said exactly what he wanted to say. Afterwards, even the mayor told me that I had done a wonderful job and that for Mr. Stamps to make that comment was the highest praise indeed.
So, now, I can try and watch for myself on the local access TV channel. I wonder how I looked on camera? My knees were shaking a bit, but hubby said I appeared rock solid.
Oh, and the other comment, from the lone female on the board, "you need to run for office." I'm still laughing about that one!!