Limited Taxation
Post Office Box 408     Peabody, Massachusetts   01960     (508) 384-0100
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CLT Update
Wednesday, November 17, 1999


TODAY IS THE DEADLINE to get any petitions still in your possession to the appropriate city and town clerks to have the signatures certified as those of registered voters.

You have only until 5:00 PM THIS AFTERNOON to get them there if the signatures are to count toward our total.

When you drop off petitions, make sure the clerk gives you a receipt. Mail the receipt(s) to us at the above address. Do NOT go back to pick up your petitions. Our drivers will "sweep"every city and town hall after all petitions have been duly certified and pick up your petition(s) along with all the other "G" tax rollback petitions in every clerk's possession.

Yesterday, after our drivers were well along on their delivery routes, the mail arrived and more petitions poured in -- some 500 additional signatures we estimate, though in the scramble didn't have the time to count. We sorted and got them out last night, and our emergency drivers team hit the road again this morning and will deliver them all over the state today. We're gearing up for another panic delivery later this morning if more arrive in today's mail!

The phones rang off the hook yesterday (and still are ringing!) with calls from folks who had last minute petitions but didn't know what to do with them. We gave them the (above) instructions to deliver their petitions to the appropriate city or town halls and send us their receipts. It's looking better and better by the moment -- and we've still got the City of Boston to collect in through this weekend! (The deadline ONLY in the City of Boston is Monday at 5:00 PM.)

Late yesterday Governor Cellucci returned the state budget along with his vetoes. We were glad to see that he took our 11th hour advice and vetoed the Legislature's outrageous rewrite of the "Clean Elections" law to again benefit themselves -- while signing off on the $10 million funding of it.

As much as we, like he, oppose "Public Assistance for Politicians," doing anything otherwise would have put another nail in the coffin of the initiative petition process. It would have surrendered the high moral ground we hold when the time comes to fight any changes proposed by the Legislature to our tax rollback initiative when it is approved by the voters and becomes law next year.

We simply cannot afford to support the initiative and referendum process only when we agree with the outcome. It's like the classic defense of the First Amendment: "I disagree with what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it."

Either we defend the process consistently and in all instances when it comes under attack, or we help erode it by handing it over piece by piece to the very politicians who force us to use it as a last resort.

We're glad CLT was able to help convince the governor.

CFord-Sig2.gif (4854 bytes)

Chip Ford

November 16, 1999

Contact:  Barbara Anderson or Chip Ford
(781) 631-6842

Governor Cellucci got his budget done on time. The Legislature was over four months late with its budget.

The legislative budget attacked an initiative petition that was passed by the voters in 1998. Governor Cellucci vetoed the outrageous change in that voter-passed law while supporting its funding, thereby defending the sanctity of the citizens' initiative process.

The final legislative budget increased spending on so-called "education reform" by an amount that is not justified by the results of the reform law. MCAS scores again prove that much of the "education" money is not being wisely spent. The Governor vetoed some of the excess. Perhaps the Massachusetts Teachers Association, instead of attacking the governor for his fiscal restraint, might work harder with the increase they got to improve the test scores.

The Legislature and the Mass. Teachers Association collaborated in a new teacher pension scheme that would have further exacerbated the teacher shortage. Governor Cellucci vetoed this scheme, proving who really cares about education and "the children."

The Legislature increased the capital gains tax. Governor Cellucci kept his "no new taxes" pledge and vetoed the tax increase.

Bravo, Governor Cellucci.

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