Newtown budget with extra school security rejected by votersPosted: Updated:
A town budget, which would've brought more police and security to schools in Newtown, was rejected in the first vote since Sandy Hook tragedy.
On Dec. 14, 20 children and six adults were shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School and since that event, security has been a priority for parents in town.
The $115 million budget for the school and town, which included $620,000 for more police officers and school resource officers at all seven schools in town, was voted down during a referendum Tuesday.
The proposed budget, which was on paper before Dec. 14, had about a 1.9 percent increase. But since the tragedy and the interest to add more police in schools, the increase went up to nearly 5 percent.
"Since Dec. 14 additional items have been placed in the municipal budget to provide enhanced safety at our elementary schools and some resource officers to the non-public schools," said Newtown First Selectwoman E. Patricia Llodra.
Llodra said she doesn't believes voters rejected that idea, they just want the bottom line on all spending tighter.
"The message I believe is that it's almost right," she said.
The town is also working to secure millions in federal grants including money to help offset the costs of school resource officers.
However, Llodra said she wants the town to budget the positions, so everyone knows they will be there.
"I don't think you could ask federal government to subsidize one town," said one parent. "I don't know if this is going to be a trend, but I think this is part of Newtown now."
The budget now goes back to the legislative council to be reworked. Meetings are scheduled for next week.
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