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No Overrides for Overpaid City Workers

Our Analysis and Evaluation of the lavish salaries paid to Newton City Workers.

From Kara Grady Boudreau

Dear Fellow Newton Taxpayers,

Before you decide which way to vote on the Mayorʼs tax override request on March 12, I urge you to consider how well the Mayor and his team have allocated the tax dollars you have already given them. As many of you read in the Boston Globe article dated 2/17/13, Newtonʼs payroll is simply out-of-control and completely out of sync with other towns of similar economic stature to ours. The total 2012 payroll for the city, not including exorbitant pension and healthcare benefits, was a whopping $191,000,000. These are just a FEW of the generous pay packages your tax dollars funded last year:

1. $9,000,000 in “other wages”. On the payroll this column does not say what “other” is so I have no idea, but it seems to be a bit more than an “office kitty for lunch”.

2. $1,285,000 in “longevity bonuses”. I thought a pension WAS a longevity bonus. Iʼm a little confused why these have to be offered to employees who are already guaranteed a pension after 10 years of service.

3. $90,000-$104,000 paid to 3 separate custodians. I had no idea this was the “going rate” for this type of work.

4. $41,000 to the Newton Teacherʼs Association President. Why are our tax dollars being allocated to pay this individual for running a union that we donʼt belong to?? In other trades, I am certain that union member dues pay the President of the Union, not tax dollars. This is by far and away the most egregious misuse of our funds.

Little wonder they can’t fix the roads. They spend 80% of the budget on salaries!

So, this override request is simply NOT about whether the town needs to fix our roads, build a new firehouse or remodel 2 schools. What it IS about is whether we the taxpayers choose to “throw good money after bad” and give the Mayor and his team more of our hard-earned money to misappropriate.

All statistics are available in City of Newton public records.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Moving Newton Forward March 05, 2013 at 01:37 PM
Brandon, this is Joshua responding on behalf of Kara. Kara has asked us to keep her place of employment as well as what she does for a living private even though this letter was written by Kara in her capacity as a private citizen.
Janet Sterman March 09, 2013 at 09:01 PM
"...with other towns of similar economic stature to ours." Holy Outrageous TAX INCREASE, BATMAN! If we keep passing tax overrides we will continue to build Newton into a country-club community, where people who were raised here and lived here their entire lives because the influx of wealthy have economically cleansed them out of town!
Really? March 09, 2013 at 10:49 PM
The phrase “other towns of similar economic stature to ours" came from Ms. Boudreau, not from Steve Siegel or from the Globe, so apparently she is the one concerned with Newton's "economic stature".
Janet Sterman March 10, 2013 at 04:18 AM
Here comes that dude so willing to speak out and so unwilling to put his name out there. It's so easy to be bold when one isn't willing to put their face on their comments...
Really? March 10, 2013 at 05:35 PM
Why not just respond to the message instead of attacking the messenger?

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