Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Jen Werner: Former skeptic backs override

To the editor:

When I first heard the call for another override I was skeptical. I just thought, “here we go again,” another group asking for money. But after discussion with my partner and getting some facts I have changed my tune and now support the override and plan to vote an enthusiastic yes June 25. I found out that the average homeowner will see an annual tax bill increase of around $230, and that people who can’t afford to pay more (seniors, disabled, veterans, etc.) may be eligible for an exemption. I also found out that our city’s fiscal problems aren’t caused by corruption and mismanagement, but instead result primarily from losses in state and federal aid and the charter school funding formula. I feel that the mayor has done his homework and has found ways to cut city costs, including making sometimes controversial proposals. Sadly, I have been forced to have too many discussions with my daughters to figure out how to redo their school schedules now that so many class offerings have been cut. The arts, technology, English, social sciences and humanities classes are all being cut. I am asking you to join me in securing the high quality of our schools and our public safety departments for the next four years by voting yes June 25. Give yourself the chance to be part of stabilizing our city’s fiscal situation while we seek reforms that do not rely on property taxes.

Jen Werner


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