The Mountain Times

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Central Vermont's Most Popular Weekly Newspaper

The Vermont budget should be accountable to Vermonters

Dear Editor,

The Governor's budget proposal address stated that we are in fiscally better shape than most of the other states and continued to say what every other governor says, "...more tough choices and restraint, as we confront continued uncertainty about the fiscal crisis in Washington." In other words, because we don't know how to change our budget process we need to impose austerity!

While many things about Vermont may be better than other states, we are identical in these perceived challenges because we continue to create a budget using archaic budgeting methods. The Vermont Workers' Center has been asking that our vision to create a budget be participatory by allowing continuous community input to set the goals for what people need and to create the budget based on those needs. It should be transparent. How many people understand the current process or the final outcome?

Ultimately, The Vermont Workers' Center is concerned that Vermonters will continue to be forced to scavenge for what is left after austerity is applied to the public sectors. The Vermont budget should be accountable to Vermonters, not to Washington DC or to the profit driven private sector.

Instead of cost shifting we want the burdens to be shared equitably so that Vermonter's fundamental needs are met. What I am asking is that our legislative body step outside their comfort zone and pay attention to the Workers' Center's People's Budget which addresses the human rights of the residents of Vermont. In other words, put people first.

Sharon Racusin, Norwich, Vt.

Tagged: Letter to the Editor