Budget adjustments made, after some debate
By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Vernon - posted Thu., Apr. 19, 2012
The Vernon Town Council made adjustments to the current year's budget at its meeting on April 17. The amendments move $75,000 from the fund balance to the police overtime and holiday pay accounts, a $500 transfer within the building department from legal notices to permits, and $13,940 from the Town Planner-Administration line item to cover mowers, plows and trailers and other machinery for Parks Maintenance.
Councilwoman Marie Herbst said she had a “real serious problem” with the second item, because it was in the budget to ensure the Plan of Conservation and Development would move in the proper direction. “That money...was put into this year's budget for a specific reason, and we have not followed through with it,” she said, asking who made the decision to purchase equipment.
Town Administrator John Ward said he largely agreed with Herbst statements, in that the line item was intended to help revamp the Planning and Zoning regulations, but not necessarily in conjunction with the POCD.
Ward added that a complete review would not be possible in the time frame between now and the rest of the fiscal year, and that there was another continunation of the revamp in the next year's budget, so the funds were proposed to fulfill a request by the Parks Department for the new equipment.
“The decision was made [that] this is a priority,” Ward said. “I think it was a prudent suggestion made to the council.”
Herbst said that residents are concerned about development in town, especially in Rockville, and that she hoped the study would happen soon.
Councilman Tom DiDio agreed.
“We have delayed funding of this study for far too long,” he said. “I think we need to move on it. I think the citizens of town deserve better.”
After a vote to divide the question, the motion carried by a vote of 7-5 on the transfer to the Parks Department. The council voted unanimously in favor of the other transfers.