Heavenly’s LTE was published today in the Burlington Free Press. The full text follows…
At a recent City Council meeting, held at noon on January 13, 2006, I noticed almost every councilor save for only five out of fourteen Councilors, were not present, resulting in no actions being taken due to no quorum, as required by Burlington’s charter. As a concerned taxpayer, I strongly feel that Councilors that we elect should be at every meeting, for the full length of the meeting, representing the people that elected them to the office, especially when we the taxpayers are paying for each of their $3,000 stipends.
The whole purpose for the meeting was a public forum for the two proposed ballot items: the local option sales tax and department head residency requirements, both of which will be on the March Ballot. For both items, as reported by Sky Barsch on January 14, 2006, they only had two speakers, with one of them also lives in my Ward. The only other person in attendance from my Ward of Burlington was the only candidate present in a contested race for City Council in Ward Seven, Jeremy Ryan. Currently in the Ward Seven Council race, there are four persons vying for the seat, including the incumbent Ellie Blais.
When I cast my ballot on March 7th for my representation on the Council, I will take the presence of the only candidate Jeremy Ryan into account, along with the absence of the current Councilor, Ellie Blais.