Select Board April 15 budget workshop heads online

| Joanne Cole, NGX |

The select board will take its FY21 budget discussions to the internet via the online meeting platform Zoom on Wednesday April 15 at 6 p.m.  To watch or listen, residents should email Sharlene Myers at  She will send details for logging in to follow along on Zoom. 

Because the meeting is a workshop, no public comment will be allowed. 

That the workshop is being conducted remotely is only the latest wrinkle in a budget season that was challenging even before the coronavirus elbowed its way into the room.  The select board’s preliminary municipal budget, with more than $5 million in spending, included cuts to library hours and staff, moves that drew swift public opposition, as well as reductions in hours of other staff and additional near-across-the-board cuts. 

Independently, the advisory budget committee had its own concerns, particularly the board’s proposed funding for NG fire/rescue.  The committee provisionally recommended cutting the department’s budget by some $200,000 and sharply reducing its services — to start the conversation, as the committee chair put it. The select board in turn found the budget committee’s fire/rescue proposal to be unworkable and unwise.

All this was to have been followed by a public hearing to gauge citizens’ reactions to the competing budget views.  But the hearing had to be cancelled.  The select board’s April 6 regular meeting was also cancelled.

During the pause in the select board’s and committee’s budget work, the pandemic’s economic fallout has become more apparent—and more stark—likely upending state and local revenue projections.    

How might the proposed town budget change as a result?  How might the budget process unfold between now and town meeting, now re-scheduled to Monday June 15? 

Email Sharlene Myers at for Zoom details and sign in Wednesday evening April 15 at 6 p.m. to learn more.