Letter: Shelton's charter does give fiscal oversight to A&T

Below is a Letter to the Editor from this week's Shelton Herald. If you'd like to have a letter to the editor run next week, email letters to brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com

Below is a Letter to the Editor from this week's Shelton Herald. If you'd like to have a letter to the editor run next week, email letters to brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com

Contributed photo

To the Editor:

It is worrisome that Alderman John Anglace continues to attack the bipartisan concerns of Shelton citizens and other city officials, additionally making statements that are untrue. His recent letter “Shelton charter places fiscal 'oversight' with aldermen” berating a letter written by former Board of Apportionment and Taxation member Wayne Bragg falsely claims the city charter does not give A&T oversight over the budget and city spending. In fact, section 7.12 (f) assigns responsibility for reviewing all charges to the city monthly to A&T, not the aldermen.

The aldermen have final budget approval powers, ability to authorize over-expenditures, balance transfers at fiscal year end and additional appropriation approvals. These powers allow the aldermen to set the city’s spending priorities, not oversee that spending is correct.

Fiscal oversight is separately entrusted to the Board of A&T through their authority to hold budget review meetings with department heads, transfer funds within a department if adjustments are necessary, and review all monthly charges. It is good fiscal management to keep these functions separate and that is what Shelton voted for in rejecting the charter revision.

But A&T is being denied their role by the Mayor Mark Lauretti team canceling monthly meetings. Also, this year Shelton’s Democratic A&T members requested budget workshops with department heads but were rebuffed without justifiable reasons. They then pointed out the mayor’s budget contained mistakes and unassigned funds in mysterious line items and asked for corrections. Republican A&T members instead attempted to rubber stamp the mayor’s budget without fixing the issues. Preventing that irresponsible vote and maintaining A&T’s budget role is what prompted the walkout Mr. Anglace maligns in his letter, not partisanship.

A few weeks later seven Republican Alderman including Mr. Anglace approved the budget without any discussion, public input or correcting any problems. I believe my fellow citizens are justifiably worried by that.

Kevin Kosty

Shelton