Double the Town Money for Sports Betting, Schemes to Block Alternate Budgets

Add another $100,000 to the tsunami of cash the town government (including the school department) are going to be swimming in during the next fiscal year… even as they demand more money from Tiverton families.  Casino News Daily reports:

Lincoln and Tiverton each get $100,000 per year from the revenue the two gambling venues generate from sports bettors. The money is paid as a compensation for having wagering allowed at the two locations.

The state’s budget for next year calls for these payments to be raised to $200,000 per year. The budget was released by the House Finance Committee last week and lawmakers are set to vote on it on Thursday, June 24.

Despite the wave of new money headed its way, the town government’s budget calls for an increase in taxes just under the state cap of 4%.

Meanwhile, Town Clerk Joan Chabot unilaterally changed the Tiverton Home Rule Charter to block two Tiverton residents from submitting alternate budgets, and the Board of Canvassers cancelled its meeting last night to add an agenda item for Friday at 4:00 p.m. that will allow it to block the two alternate budgets that snuck through Chabot’s blockade.

The Town Council is secretly working with Town Solicitor Michael Marcello (who is a town council member, himself, in Scituate) to pressure the Board of Canvassers to eliminate the two budgets.  That would leave only Budget Committee’s budget, which will impose the biggest tax increase in Tiverton since before the FTR was introduced.

Over recent years, the Board of Canvassers has arbitrarily blocked or not blocked alternate budgets depending on the politics of who was for or against them.  This year, the board is still denying in-person access to its meetings, which will limit the ability of residents to express their opinions.

Justin Katz

Justin Katz is a writer and researcher focusing on Rhode Island policy and politics. For more about Justin, see our About page. (401) 835-7156.

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