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Trickle of Voters Casting Weston Budget Ballots

WESTON, CONN. – Less than 70 Weston residents had cast ballots as of noon Thursday in the town's buget vote, prompting an election official to question the voting process.

The voting at the Weston Middle School, which continues until 8 p.m., is a new system that replaced hand-held voting at an annual town budget meeting. That was how the vote was conducted until last year.

This year, about 90 hand-held votes were taken at the budget meeting on April 4, with the remaining votes to be cast Thursday on voting machines at the middle school.

The low turnout prompted Bob Gardener, a Zoning Board of Appeals commissioner, who is a vote checker, to say, “It raises questions on the legitimacy of the separate referendum.”

Gardener said the town spent $4,000 on the computerized voting, “which doesn’t yield much more information than what we’ve got.”

There are 6,385 registered voters in Weston.

Residents today are voting on town and school budgets for 2012-2013. The town budget of $11,314,602 is a 1.17 percent increase over the current budget. The school budget of $45,587,192 is a 0.93 percent increase.

Reg Bowden, a Weston resident for 31 years, approved of the budget process and expressed support for the school budget. “Care has been given by the town to support the education process without compromising the quality of education,” he said.

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