Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Public Assets Institute Presents "Looking Beyond the Recession" in Northfield

The Public Assets Institute (PAI) will present "Looking Beyond the Recession," an analysis of Vermont’s budget picture on Wednesday, April 7, 2010 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Kreitzberg Library (Community Room) of Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont. The presentation by Paul Cillo, President of PAI looks at the current budget crisis, what future budgets may look like, and offers a balanced perspective on how Vermont can move toward a sustainable economic future using data and projections gathered from the Joint Fiscal Office, the Vermont legislature, and others.

"The economic crisis means many more Vermont families are struggling while the state’s ability to help them shrinks,” said Mr. Cillo. “The immediate crisis comes on top of decades of economic changes that make it increasingly difficulty to produce balanced budgets that meet Vermonters' needs," he said. “Our goal is to raise Vermonters’ awareness about the state's budget options so we can have a state that works for all Vermonters.”

Paul Cillo is the founder and president of the Public Assets Institute. He has been active in public policy work for over thirty years, as a local and state political representative, consultant on health care, education finance, and other tax and budget issues; and on energy efficiency. He represented Hardwick, Walden, and Stannard in the Vermont House of Representatives for ten years, serving four years on the tax-writing Ways & Means Committee and four as Majority Leader. During those years he designed and led the Legislature to adopt a groundbreaking education financing system that equalizes opportunity for all Vermont children, regardless of where they live.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Town Meeting Day: Budgets and Brownies Popular

Northfield Democrats successfully organized the 2nd Annual Bake Sale to benefit CERV. Together, we raised over $120 in small cash contributions in addition to canned or non-perishable food items we collected. It's a fun and easy way to help our local food shelf. A big thank you to everyone who helped make it happen!

The Times Argus reported the news, but it bears repeating: for the second year in a row, our school budget passed the first time out. This is great news for the district. The school board has worked diligently to keep costs low and the budget in line. The budget passed by an almost 2-to-1 margin (552 - 307). Other items that passed included the town's spending plan ($2.2 million), and an increase in the percentage of voters required to rescind a school budget vote (from 5% to 10%). There were no contested races.