Sullivan lawmakers nix their own budget; money for environmental group axed
Lawmaker Ron Hiatt said he had been considering voting against the budget as a way of making a statement, but he said instead he decided simply to make the statement. He also said he opposed the 2% property tax cap. He added, “We’re about to spend down the little reserves that we have, feel bad for the new legislators coming in.”
Lawmaker Leni Binder said she was going to vote against the budget because that was the will of the new legislator who will be replacing her, Gene Benson.
In the end, Binder, Sager, Goodman, Frank Armstrong, Elwin
Wood, and Kathy LaBuda voted against the budget, while Hiatt, Alan Sorenson and county chairman Jonathan Rouis voted in favor.
Rouis reacted to the vote with visible frustration and urged his colleagues to work with him over the next five days to come up with a budget they can support. He said, “It’s a fundamental responsibility of this board to adopt a budget. (This vote) is a copout, it’s not doing your job; it’s not doing the people of this county any service sitting here voting no and allowing the tentative budget to move forward. Step up and do your jobs.”