Town of Berlin to vote on possibly creating finance board

The town of Berlin is split on charter changes (WFSB)

Voter turnout across the state is expected to be high this November due to the presidential election, however in Berlin voters are charged up over proposed changes to their form of government.

There are signs everywhere in Berlin, saying ‘vote yes’ or ‘vote no,’ and they aren’t just covering one issue.

There will be five questions on Berlin’s November ballot, and the most significant is the charter reform, which would create a board of finance.

"We are looking for the town to be more transparent, to get more people involved in politics,” said Anne Reilly, of the Berlin Republican Town Committee.

Reilly supports a board of finance, and so do many republicans on the town committee.

The town had a board of finance some 20 years ago, and supporters said they see it as a better way to handle the town’s finances.

Opponents see it as another layer of government.

"They have to by appointed by the democratic town committee or the republican town committee --- are they going to agree with their candidate --- or someone who is going to promote their wishes,” said Richard Price, who is against the charter reform.

He said the town already has a subcommittee for finances, but some argue it's made up of town councilors who have enough on their plate.

The board of finance would be full time, with three democrats and three republicans, and term limits. Voters will also be asked to change the board of education, to make it partisan, so that voters know what party people are from. They too would have term limits.

"I picked up my information, I’ve spoken to a few people who are strongly involved. I plan on voting,” said Kathleen Cruz, of Berlin.

This could be one of the more complicated elections. Voters will vote on things that could change how their town runs.

With the presidential election and these issues, there could be record turnout.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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