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October 21st, 2018

Guest Opinion: Accountability In Montpelier

By Justin Turcotte

Voters, we are all responsible for our government. 4 years ago you honored me by permitting me to have an active role an elected official.

We are fortunate to have engaged and dedicated residents, staff, and elected officials. Before I ran for office, I was surprised to learn how our beloved City had been functioning.

For the first year on city council I listened and learned as much as I could about what was going on from residents, city staff, and organizations that interact with the city. I continued the work that the Mayor and fellow councilors had begun, to ensure there was a viable plan, to fund roads, bridges, and the pipes that supply clean water and remove sewage from folks’ houses and businesses.

The City of Montpelier has about 110 full time employees but limited dedicated human resource capacity. It became clear that it would be helpful to have a fair, standardized, predictable way to agree upon reasonable, measurable, expectations on how we spent +- $12,000,000.00 in taxpayer money every year.

We now set goals together check in mid year and conduct a formal archived evaluation. It is not uncommon for a significant portion of the council to turn over every year. This will make it easy for new councilors to get up to speed on strengths and weaknesses. A detailed description can be found on the City of Montpelier’s web site, Attached to the August 23rd 2017 meeting agenda item F.

I would encourage every resident to vote, let your elected officials know what you want and expect from your government, and hold them accountable next time you vote. That is the easiest way to get the government you deserve.

Just like the human body, the muscles of government weaken and extra pounds pile on. Liberty affords all of us the right to determine the degree to which we get civically involved. Please consider running for office or supporting someone who is. Those who chose not to get involved will get the government they deserve.

Justin Turcotte

City Council

District 3

Montpelier

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