Bedford town officials and the town council are considering giving to taxpayers the money that belongs to the taxpayers. Next thing you know, the high school will be telling students to take the bus and leave their cars at home.
The town has a policy that it should always keep on hand an amount of money (the taxpayers’ money) equal to somewhere between 8 to 17% of a year’s appropriations. It calls this money “unassigned.” In the past, if the “fund” topped 17%, officials would spend it, sort of like a family might do with a tax refund.
But the pot rose by $2 million in the last tax year and now stands at more than $16 million. And, wonder of wonders, officials think it would be good to use the taxpayers’ money to reduce the next tax rate.
That’s nice, but the fact that taxpayers were made to pay higher taxes than necessary in the first place should not be overlooked. They also might want to look at the rules around this “unassigned” balance and how large it should be.
Meanwhile, someone needs to get a handle on the car count in Bedford, where there are now more cars than there are people. It seems many of the cars are in the hands of high school students who have overflowed school parking. If the taxpayers aren’t careful, they will find themselves nicked for school parking garages next.