Letter to the editor: Both an override AND bus fees?

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To the Editor:

In 2008, the Shrewsbury school administration requested the selectmen place a permanent proposition 2-1/2 operational override on the ballot. The school administration stated it would need to institute a bus fee if the override was defeated. The override was defeated. True to its word, the school administration implemented the school bus “fee.”

In 2014, the Board of Selectmen put another Prop 2-1/2 question on the ballot. This time the override passed, costing the average residential taxpayer an additional $500 per year FOREVER. Sixty school positions were filled. Municipal and public safety funds were increased. Oddly, the school bus fees remain. None of the multi-million dollar override funds has been allocated to eliminate the bus fee.

We have a capable group of people on the School Committee. They believe the superintendent is doing a great job and increased his salary accordingly. In 2008 the school administration believed we needed school bus fees because an override was defeated. Now that a multi-million dollar override has passed, many taxpayers are rightly wondering: “Why do we still have bus fees?”

Perhaps the elimination of the school bus fees will be announced at the February budget hearings. That will be an opportunity to rectify the situation.

The stated reason for the bus fees has been eliminated. Young families who must pay an additional $500 per year in real estate taxes, due to the recent override, must still pay up to $500 per year for bus fees. Double taxation! That’s both an override AND bus fees.

Benjamin W. Tartaglia Sr.

Shrewsbury