Meriden residents call for referendum on proposed budget - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Meriden residents call for referendum on proposed budget

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Meriden residents are signing a petition, calling for a budget referendum (WFSB) Meriden residents are signing a petition, calling for a budget referendum (WFSB)
MERIDEN, CT (WFSB) -

Another year, and Meriden is facing another potential tax increase.

City residents say they’ve had enough, and now a petition is going around the community.

It’s been a week, and already hundreds of signatures.

If enough people sign it, the tax increase will have to go up for a vote with the taxpayers in Meriden.

Chanpak Patel owns a liquor store in Meriden, and said taxes just went up last year.

“I feel like that’s a lot of tax they’re raising every year and can’t afford after the taxes and everything,” Patel said.

Many residents feel the same.

“I just want us to be a part of the conversations from now on,” said Mike Carabetta, of Meriden.

They said if taxes go up, they’ll all have to make cuts at home.

The proposed $198 million budget calls for a 4 percent increase in property tax.

That’s about a $200 increase for the average homeowner, and if you own a vehicle, taxes on that are slated to go up too.

While taxpayers want the city to slash elsewhere, the city manager said the budget is bare bones.

It takes into account negotiated union contracts and city services for taxpayers.

“Obviously as a city manager, I’m not overly happy about it. The budget I sent forward to the council is what I felt is needed to meet the obligations for what the citizens want in the city,” said Acting City Manager Ken Morgan.

About 2,700 people need to sign the petition by June 20 for a vote on the budget.

On the flip side, the city manager said if a referendum goes through, it could cost the city $10,000 to even $30,000 to hold the special vote.

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