On June 4, 2011 the people of Wrentham have an opportunity to vote on a financial measure that will provide the necessary funds to operate the schools, public safety, and other municipal departments at the current level of service.
Having served as a Selectman for the last three years, I have participated in developing the last three budgets and have observed first hand the objective effects of steadily declining revenue and shrinking resources.
School and municipal staff have risen to the occasion with dedication and financial concessions. They have shown an exemplary respect for our money and have gone above and beyond the call of duty to serve the public and preserve the quality of our children’s education, public safety, and our other services.
Hard work and dedication only go so far. The Elementary school has already cut Spanish and General Music. Gym and Art have been reduced to half-year courses. On the chopping block for this year are busses within two miles of the school, the Instrumental Music program, Art, Gym, Computer Classes, smaller class size, and many other services. Some might argue that providing the three “Rs” will be enough. It won’t be. The world our kids are inheriting is different from the one in which we grew up.
The Police and fire departments have been understaffed for years. Town meeting finally understood the operational necessity for adding new officers and fire fighters.
There’s no one to turn to except each other to fix our situation. Regardless of whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican, a Conservative or a Liberal, a Townie or a Transplant, a senior household or a young family, the common ground we share is that we agree it is in everyone’s best interest to pool our money and entrust our local government to provide us with the necessary services—especially since we are governed by direct democracy. The essence of that social contract is that we share the costs in good times and bad, regardless of whether we benefit from each and every service.
What will you see in the mirror at the end of the day on June 4th? Vote Yes and you will see a person who embraced his or her role as a responsible citizen of Wrentham.