On November 2, Southampton Town voters will cast their ballots to determine town leadership for the next two to four years. Events over the past few years make plain that effective local leadership make a huge difference in our lives. Leaders should be judged by the day-to-day management of town services, execution of public policy initiatives and contributions to community cohesion.
Based on the performance in these areas, local voters should reward the current administration in the November election.
Two government services that can be measured to demonstrate sound management are crime statistics and trends in financial performance. Regarding the former, Southampton Town’s crime rate decreased by 25 percent from July 2016 to July 2021. Major crimes dropped, from 457 in the period July 2016 to July 2017, to 345 in the period July 2020 to July 2021.
Regarding town finances, debt management is exceptional, as demonstrated by the reduction in outstanding long-term debt by 38 percent from 2014 to 2021. Noticing this performance, Moody’s Investors Service assessed a AAA rating to the town’s $82 million of outstanding general obligation bonds, thus … [more]