Many of us spent two long nights this week making decisions that will impact residents of this town for the year to come and beyond. While Town Meeting turnout appeared to be on the high side relatively speaking, it remains the case that the few are making decisions for the many.
That begs the question, when you voted at Town Meeting, were you voting for your own best interests or those of the town? And are they necessarily different?
In arguing for a reduction to the K-8 school budget on Monday night, Advisory Committee member Tim Langella asked voters to think of the greater good. “You’re going to be making that decision not just for yourself, but for people who are unemployed and who are on fixed incomes,” Langella said. “We sit up here not making personal decisions, but looking at what’s best for the community, because that’s what we are.”
But in a comment on this blog, one Southborough mom had a different viewpoint. “People need to show up and represent their interests. I showed up and represented mine. Such is democracy. If a person does not want higher taxes, that person needs to go to TM and make him or herself heard,” commenter ‘mom of two’ wrote. “When I vote, I vote for what *I* think is right for the town and my family – not for what *others* might think.”
For those of you who went to Town Meeting, what most influenced your vote – your needs or the needs of the community? For those of you who didn’t attend, do you feel the results reflect what’s best for you? Share your thoughts in the comments.