Editorial: Please vote

Every taxpayer in Wilton has a right to tell town officials if they approve of the way their tax money is being spent. That is the power of the vote, and the opportunity comes this week to express approval or not for the municipal and school budgets, as well as five capital projects. Those who did not cast a vote at Tuesday’s Annual Town Meeting may do so Saturday at the adjourned vote, from 9 to 6, at the Clune Center.

Last year, 93.1% of Wilton’s eligible voters gave up that right by not voting. This is not an uncommon phenomenon, but it is very unfortunate. Last week in Weston, only 224 people cast ballots, a turnout of 3.5%.

If fewer than 15% of Wilton’s registered voters come out to vote, the budget will pass automatically, but the questions on capital projects to be bonded will not. They must pass by a simple majority. If you care about these projects, you should make your preferences known.

If you do not know what the budget numbers are, visit wiltonct.org. To read stories about the budget and capital projects, visit wiltonbulletin.com.

The mill rate would increase about 2%, from 25.9896 to 26.5132. A house assessed at $800,000 under the current mill rate incurs $20,791.68 in taxes. Under the proposed mill rate for fiscal year 2015, that same homeowner would pay $21,210.56, an increase of $418.88. (A math error in last week’s editorial indicated the increase would be less.)

Up or down, yes or no, do not give up your right to be heard at the voting booth.