Report by Paula Antolini, April 3, 2022, 3:03PM EDT
Message from the Town of Bethel:
In accordance with the Town of Bethel Charter, §C6-3, the Annual Town Meeting will be held on Monday, April 4th at the Bethel Middle School Auditorium, beginning at 7:00 pm. The purpose of the Annual Town Meeting is to consider and vote on the proposed Town of Bethel and Bethel Public Schools budgets for the upcoming fiscal year 2022-2023, following which the Town Meeting will be adjourned to a town referendum on a date to be determined by at the Town Meeting.
As proposed, the FY2022-2023 budget would increase the mill rate by an estimated amount of 0.98%*. A summary of proposed expenses and estimated revenue is provided below for your review. Additional information is posted on the town website at www.bethel-ct.gov.
WHO CAN ATTEND AND WHO CAN VOTE
Anyone may attend, but only Bethel residents legally registered in the Town of Bethel may vote at the Annual Town Meeting. Additionally, non-residents who own property in excess of $1,000 in value may also participate and vote on the town budget.
As this is a meeting where legal votes will be taken, our Registrars of Voters will be on hand to check voter identification, so please remember to bring your I.D. and arrive early to help them efficiently check in all voters and start the meeting on time.
“Town Meeting” form of local government dates back almost 300 years to the earliest colonial settlements in the New World. It is the oldest form of direct democracy in existence in the United States today. All Bethel voters are encouraged to attend and participate in this time-honored New England tradition.
*Note: The mill rate change noted above is an estimate based on expected revenues. The final mill rate will be established by the Board of Finance following a successful budget referendum, the date of which will be established by the Town Meeting.
TOWN OF BETHEL, CONNECTICUT
NOTICE OF ANNUAL TOWN BUDGET MEETING
The legal voters of the Town of Bethel, Connecticut and those persons entitled to vote therein are hereby notified to assemble at the Annual Town Budget Meeting to be held at the Bethel Middle School, 600 Whittlesey Drive in Bethel, Connecticut on Monday, April 4, 2022 at 7:00 p.m., for the following purposes, to wit:
1) To consider and take action upon a resolution to appropriate the sum of Thirty Four Million Two Hundred Forty Six Thousand and Five Eighty Six ($34,246,586) Dollars which sum includes the Town Operating Budget of Twenty Eight Million Three Hundred Thirty One Thousand and Seven Hundred and Seventeen ($28,331,717) Dollars, Debt Service of Five Million Four Hundred Sixty Four Thousand Eight Hundred and Sixty Nine ($5,464,869) Dollars, and the School’s Building Maintenance account of Four Hundred Fifty Thousand ($450,000) Dollars as recommended by the Board of Finance, as the total Annual Town Operating Budget for the Fiscal Year commencing July 1, 2022.
2) To consider and take action upon a resolution to appropriate the sum of Fifty-One Million One Hundred Sixty-Four Thousand and Eight Hundred Thirty-One ($51,164,831) Dollars as recommended by the Board of Finance, as the Annual Board of Education Budget for the Fiscal Year commencing July 1, 2022.
3) To authorize the First Selectman and the Treasurer of the Town of Bethel to borrow on short term notes or loans “tax anticipation notes” an amount not to exceed the aggregate of Six Million ($6,000,000) Dollars for the purpose of paying current expenditures of the Town of Bethel for the fiscal year commencing July 1, 2022, which tax anticipation notes are to be repaid from anticipated tax revenues.
4) To consider and take action upon a resolution that the tax on motor vehicles and personal property be collected in one or more than one installment.
5) To establish the date on which the machine vote on the annual town budget shall take place in accordance with the provisions of the Bethel Town Charter.
6) To do any and all things which may be legally required or appropriate to accomplish the above-named purposes.
Dated at Bethel, Connecticut this 24th day of March 2022.
Board of Selectmen
Matthew S. Knickerbocker, First Selectman
Richard C. Straiton, Selectman
Bryan Terzian, Selectman