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Oct 14, 2015 7:43 PM

Derry residents, councilors, ready to move on from budget battle


DERRY- Residents are ready to move forward after a record-breaking turnout at the polls where voters overturned all eight budget items on the ballot.

“The election was a good opportunity for Derry residents to come out and say where they stood on the tax issue,” said Councilor Mark Osborne.

The council approved the budget 4-3 back in May, making huge cuts to lower taxes.

Residents upset over the massive cuts to Police and Fire, petitioned the council and got a court order to leave the budget up to a vote by the people.

Two items on the fire department: lower staffing levels, and the closure of a station seeing the highest margin, both overturned by one thousand votes. Other issues were a closer call.

”So that tells us that there are a lot of unhappy people in Derry that are not happy with the taxes and not happy with the way things went, and that's perfectly fine, but we're now at a point where it's a clean slate,” said resident Jenna Paradise.

Many question if there will be a call for a recount. Councilor Osborne says he wouldn’t suggest it.

“I think that the council needs to make decisions that best represent what the community communicated to us last night,” Osborne said.

Funding will be discussed at next week’s Town Council meeting. For now, Station Four will remain closed, only used for storage and training.

This budget battle has many looking forward to the council election in March. Resident Randall Kelley is expressing interest in a campaign.

“I’m definitely running for District Four,” Kelley said.

Councilors up for re-election are considering their future at Town Hall.

“I have to do a lot of thinking about what I’m going to do in March. So, jury is out on that one,” said Osborne.


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