Update: Important meetings on school budgeting start Tuesday

NOTE: The School Committee Meeting has changed locations. It will be held tonight (Tuesday) at 7:30 PM in the Wellington Elementary Music Room, not the Community Room at the Chenery, as indicated on the SC Web site.

Those of you who have lived through a town budget cycle before know that it’s a long process and that there are vertigo-inducing ups and downs along the way, as one or two key budget issues poke their way to the front of the pack and incite the passions of town voters. Last budget season there were a few such issues, including funding forthe schools and full day kindergarten, an ordinance regulating the introduction of new banks in town, and of course a budget override to try to repair the town’s roads.

While these debates often boil down to a key vote, or a show of force by town voters late in the process, the reality is that the shape of the debate and its parameters are often set early in the budget season, at sparsely attended meetings of the School Committee, the Warrant Committee, The Board of Selectmen, and so on. The important stuff is starting now. Coming up this week, the School Committee meets Tuesday at 7:30 pm in the Wellington Elementary Music Room. The meeting is the first of many in which the Committee will begin hashing out the budget possibilities for FY 2009 and, with a sharp economic downturn and falling tax revenue at the federal, state and local level, it will be important to understand, early on, what cuts or changes might be proposed and start advocating one way or the other for them. A full schedule of School Committee meetings can be found here.

It’s important that B2 readers get out to this meetings even though no vital matters will be decided at them. The earlier folks get engaged and voice their opinions and priorities, the more likely it will be that the Town’s elected officials take them into consideration and that the outcome of months of meetings fits the voters’ desires.

So come on out to the Chenery on Tuesday evening and have your voice heard. More information is available here.