The city clerk and registrars of voters have determined that there are enough valid signatures on a petition challenging the city’s to bring the item before the City Council.
The petition also challenges the council's decision to set the mill rate, or tax per $1,000 of value, at 27.22. This represents a 7.5 percent increase from the 2012 fiscal year mill rate of 25.31.
Petitioners collected 784 signatures. Of this total, 644 were accepted and 140 were rejected. Petitioners needed at least 483 signatures to put the item before the counil.
The council will receive the petition at their regular meeting on Monday, scheduled for 7 p.m. at . The council may decide to rescind their previous votes or send the items to a referendum vote.
The final budget approved by the council appropriated $42,323,256 for the municipal budget and $40,626,405 for the . A total of 19 municipal positions are cut in the city budget.
The final budget decision overrode a , but also restored with the intent of freeing up money to avoid .
Actions following the approval of the budget have cast uncertainty on the status of some of the approved funding. The restoration of administrative positions was made on the understanding that tentative agreements with the fire and police unions would provide the necessary funds without the need for further cuts. However, a failed in a 3-3 tie on July 2. Finizio has postponed 25 scheduled layoffs in the department until July 17 to allow the council further time to review the agreement and revisit the vote at its Monday meeting.
Dr. Steven Adamowski, the special master appointed to New London Public Schools, has said the council erred in anticipating $809,000 in additional Education Cost Sharing funds under Gov. Dannel Malloy’s education reform plan, since Superintendent Nicholas Fischer must develop a one-year plan for the district before the funds are available. Adamowski also said the state is to free up the money budgeted for that department for preserving jobs and programs, saying it was approved without a clear understanding of monetary savings.
Although the budget went into effect on July 1, tax bills were sent out based on 2010 fiscal year figures since the budget process was not completed prior to the mailing date. Supplemental bills may be used to account for the tax increase.
Correction: The original story said the petition challenged the total budget. It challenges the municipal budget and tax rate, but does not challenge the school budget.