WESTPORT, Conn. – Westport will have more money to spend next year. The Representative Town Meeting, the town’s legislative body, Monday night approved a $75.6 million spending package for the 2013-14 fiscal year, which begins July 1.
The budget represents a 2.4 percent increase over the current year’s spending and will enable the town to hire another police officer and fund a full-time tree warden, First Selectman Gordon Joseloff told the RTM.
“This budget continues to give priority to public safety,” Joseloff said.
To improve school security, the additional police officer will work within in the schools as a youth officer, Joseloff said. Currently, the town has one youth officer. Hiring a second youth officer, he said, will “free up other manpower” to focus on quality of life issues — such as speeding and distracted drivers.
Having a full-time tree warden, Joseloff said, is also important to ensuring public safety. The town’s tree warden currently works one day a week. However, more time needs to be dedicated to cutting, pruning and properly maintaining the town’s trees so that they don’t become hazardous, he said.
The budget will also allow for the town’s information technology systems to be updated, Joseloff said.
The RTM unanimously approved the budget. The Board of Education’s total proposed $117.4 million budget will be put to vote Tuesday night at 7:30 in the Town Hall auditorium.
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