Many of us in Scarborough are not happy about the six new full-time municipal positions which were “slipped into” the second reading of the budget and approved Wednesday night (May 18). These positions, representing almost a half million dollars, appeared neither in the proposed budget nor the first reading.
Many of us were completely blindsided by this last-minute change by the town manager. There was no public forum in which this was addressed.
By the second reading, citizens were more focused on the budget process, the cooperation of the two finance committees and a budget that was coming in near 3 percent with little apparent controversy. Town management apparently decided it could just sneak these positions into the second reading.
It is now too late to do anything, because the council has the final word on the municipal side of the budget.
The way this was orchestrated – waiting until the last day to put these positions out in front of citizens, was deceptive and underhanded and disrespects the will and right of Scarborough taxpayers to have a say in how tax dollars are spent. The true character of some of our town managers and councilors shows through clearly, and they should be ashamed. There are a multitude of financial reasons why this is a foolish spending decision. The way in which this decision was made however, is completely disheartening and sadly illustrates why Scarborough citizens and many Americans at large have lost faith in our political process.