Divided Falmouth council opposes excise tax, TABOR questions

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FALMOUTH — Town Councilors on Monday approved resolutions opposing two statewide referendums, but not unanimously.

A resolution on Question 2, which would reduce the vehicle excise tax, passed 5-0 with two abstentions.

Before the vote, Councilor Bonny Rodden said she supported the resolution because councilors “had a moral and financial obligation to vote on this issue.”

“We as the leaders of this town have an obligation to take a stand,” she said.

In contrast, Councilor Tony Payne said “it is not the place of the council to take a position,” adding the decision isn’t up to the council, but in the hands of the people town councilors represent. Though he said he personally planned to vote against Question 2 and in favor of Question 4, the so-called Taxpayer Bill of Rights, he said he would abstain from voting as a councilor.

Chairwoman Cathy Breen, and Councilors Teresa Pierce, David Libby, Will Armitage and Rodden voted to support the resolution; Payne and Councilor Fred Chase abstained.

A resolution to oppose Question 4, the TABOR II referendum, carried 4-1, with votes of approval from Breen, Armitage, Pierce and Rodden. Libby voted against the resolution, while Chase and Payne abstained.

Breen said her opposition to TABOR II is based on her concern that state funding for education will suffer. Libby said he has supports TABOR II and voted against the council resolution because he is “absolutely appalled by the state.”

Peggy Roberts can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or proberts@theforecaster.net