I wonder how many residents know that the city of Augusta is on run on 48 percent of the city budget. The remaining 52 percent is for the Augusta School Department, which, of course, is controlled by the school board and superintendent. The same school board hired a new principal for the Vo-Tech center for a salary of $81,000 per year, making two principals and three assistant principals for that building. Coincidentally, that is the same amount to open Bicentenial Nature Park and fill a part-time Augusta police officer position.

With their 48 percent, the mayor and the council run the police, fire and rescue departments, public works (the folks who do snow removal, trash and recycling pickups, run Hatch Hill Landfill, sweep streets, etc.), Lithgow Public Library, Bicentennial Park (when it’s open) and provide many more services.

The City Council, of course, has to approve the budget and raise taxes to cover it; but once approved, it is my understanding the council has no control over the other 52 percent.

Maybe we should ask questions of those who oversee the largest portion of our tax money.

Tom Connors


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