This is in response to Leo Mainelli’s letter that distorts what his PAC, the CCA, has really done.
What has the CCA really done? The CCA-controlled council has overtaxed the residents of Charlestown for the past 5 years! The town’s unassigned surplus grew by $5.2 million in 5 years, while the CCA increased our taxes. For the fiscal year that ended in June 2019, the town’s surplus grew by an additional $2.2 million in one year. We now have a whopping $9.1 million in unassigned surplus. That’s called overtaxation.
Mr. Mainelli says, “The CCA has been responsive to our voters, and when a majority were not in favor of a new community center, our CCA councilors reduced the tax rate instead.” That sentence is disingenuous and distorts reality.
It was not the CCA councilors that reduced the tax rate. It was Charlestown Residents United (CRU) councilor, Deb Carney, who made the proposal. Not the CCA. In fact, when Deb first suggested a tax reduction at the meeting when the CCA $3.1 million community center first emerged, she was ignored by the CCA councilors. The CCA councilors also ignored the numerous people who spoke against their $3.1 million community center at the budget public hearing. The CCA councilors then ignored the over 300 people who signed a petition against the community center. It wasn’t until the CCA suffered an overwhelming defeat at the polls during the budget vote that they finally realized they had better listen.
After the defeat of the CCA’s irresponsible budget, it was Deb Carney who proposed the tax reduction. At the meeting when the revised budget was proposed, not one CCA councilor opened their mouth to offer any suggestions on how to correct the budget debacle they had created. They waited for Deb to make a proposal, then they quickly jumped on board.
It is unfortunate that Mr. Mainelli wants to try and rewrite history. It was not the CCA councilors who reduced the tax rate. It was Deb Carney who proposed the tax reduction. It was Charlestown Residents United who got the word out. It was the numerous Charlestown residents from all over town who united together to spread the word about the CCA’s ill-conceived plan. It’s sad Mr. Mainelli is now trying to distort what really happened to try and make his CCA councilors look better.
The writer is the chairwoman of Charlestown Residents United.