Our small community operates on a very strict budget. I know this because I am the Town Clerk and Tax Collector. Every year we struggle to make ends meet because our residents refuse to vote to approve any sort of tax increase. We put it up each year for a vote and all they do is complain. I wish for one moment they would sit in on a planning meeting to see how difficult it is to supply services while having no money to do so. This year, may be different! We sent a letter out letting the town residents know that we would no longer be able to allow events at our local hall. It is owned and operated by the local government so the residents have been able to use the facility for dances, parties, and fundraisers in the past. We started getting calls once the letters were delivered and when we said that we could no longer afford to heat and cool the building people then understood our plight. Words spread quickly and the new budget, with a small tax increase should go through without a problem. Then we can operate the HVAC system and things can go back to normal. Many people just take things like heating and cooling public buildings for granted. They don’t take into account the energy costs, maintenance, and upgrades that are needed. They just feel that the government, local or otherwise, is taxing them for no reason. This all changes quickly when you start taking away services that they are used to getting and inform them that there is no money in the budget to provide them.