2016-07-21 / Letters

Group wants fiscal responsibility in city

To the editor:

We are writing this letter with the hope of working together. We’d like the community to understand what Concerned Citizens of Biddeford is and why we exist. We understand that we elect officials to represent us and we respect that. However, we don’t believe we can afford to wait to let an election late next year be the only means for citizens to be heard.

Our group is diverse. We have members who are Independent, Democratic and Republican. We have members who have served as elected officials, we have members from various industries and we have members that have grown up here in addition to members that haven’t. We are, however, united by one thing: The desire to make sure residents are heard and that our city is being properly managed.

We meet on a regular basis, which is when we decide where to focus our efforts, what our goals are and how we will achieve those goals. Right now, we are most concerned about a lack of fiscal responsibility that’s existed and continues to existed here in Biddeford. We want to make sure taxpayers understand why their taxes are so high, where that money is spent and how decisions are made about where that money goes. We are specifically concerned about money being directed to entities and initiatives downtown. As a group, we support economic development, we believe that it can lead to a lesser tax burden for taxpayers and we also support cultivating a community. However, we believe the opposite is happening despite a great deal of money having been spent. We seek to understand what’s causing this.

We recently sent Freedom of Information Act requests, which citizens can find online, and they were rejected by the city. We intend to be more specific with requests and hope this is found acceptable. In the meantime, we are combing through financials and other statements we can acquire legally and ethically. We’re determined to get to the truth and we believe that doing so will improve the future for all residents of Biddeford.

Craig H. Cantara, Steve Martin, H. Howard Hanson, Suzanne R. Parenteau, Matthew D. Lauzon and Elizabeth A. Cantara

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