There is something grossly wrong here. Residents cannot afford this. There are homeowners barely hanging on "before" this 3.8%. Full time city employees are protected by unions and getting step increases and cost of living increases each year and a guaranteed income for life after retirement, also a longevity bonus I found out about recently. This may have worked in a different era, but doesn't really exist anymore in the private sector, and is especially troublesome in Norwalk. Union-supported public employees have become the privileged class in this city. Part time employees (and these are often highly skilled individuals) not supported by unions and with no benefits have received 0% over the past 4-5 years; these employees work side by side with union "haves" in offices, in schools, and on city fields and streets. I worked for the town of Westport full and part time for more than 20 years; the "pie" was split among ALL town employees during that time.
I work a very few hours a week in the Norwalk Library; however, I was furloughed in April until at least July due to running out of of part time funds. I am lucky enough to have another job, but I know several people who work in the Library who count on that small part time hourly wage; their hours have been reduced. The "free" programs and resources of public libraries are essential to citizens in difficult economic times --for books and AV like DVDs, computers, recreation, socializing, and information.
Back on topic, I believe that the City of Norwalk and many individual citizens who live here are in real financial trouble. I do not support any tax increase without a realistic and fair assessment of human resources across all levels. We have become a city of "haves" and "have nots." View Comment
Part time employees of Norwalk have received a 0% raise in at least 4 years. These are not transient employees; many have worked for the city for decades. Many of these people reside in Norwalk and pay ever increasing taxes. Other communities (Westport noteably) split the percentage among ALL employees. This is the fair and ethical thing to do. I am against any raise unless ALL employees are included. View Comment
Part time employees of the city are paid very little, while the full timers are smug about their automatic step increases and union negotiations. Part time employees (under 20 hours/week) have received a 0% increase in the past 4-5 years (maybe someone can verify the number of years it has been). Many if not most of these people live in Norwalk. In these tough economic times I object to any tax increase whatsoever. View Comment
There are many residents of Norwalk and throughout Connecticut who register their cars in other states to avoid the property tax. These tend to be the most expensive vehicles purchased by individuals who can most afford to pay the state taxes. Not only is it illegal, it is unfair to the rest of us. View Comment