Stop tax increase petition - and how residents responded to the budget survey

By Pepper Parr

November 14th, 2023



Progress is not always a streak of lightening that dazzles and startles.

It is a steady step by step game.

The petition Wendy Fletcher put up for people to sign if they so wished has passed its first 2500 signatures and is working its way to 5000.  The petition will be in place until the end of the year.

If you want to be part of the effort to Stop the proposed 2024 tax increase click HERE 

Ms Fletcher tends to be a bit on the blunt side – speaks her mind.  In a recent email she said: “They are lying. They put out a Budget Feedback Survey every year. Almost no one reads the budget bc it makes your eyes bleed. It took me 3-4 days. But 1 of those was also to learn all the back history on Skyway. And I also had to find the pertinent reports since they link to nothing. By their own data only 57 people read the budget. They did this last year. Said look at our results, people want us to do this. I decided, not this year, you’re not getting away with that again.  

“I have a strong ethical and moral base. So this is hard for me. I grew up here. I don’t expect it in my little city. Its still little by most standards. Its hard to swallow that they’re so selfish and care so little about taxpayer.”

Fletcher has a problem with those city Council members who point to a survey that had just over 800 people responding to it but individually don’t want to even acknowledge a survey that now has more than 2500 signatures.

That leaves the Budget Feedback Survey, which is the only feedback that should matter. If you aren’t going to use it, why waste people’s time? They used it last year. But they don’t like the results they got this year so they aren’t going to? I shouldn’t say that bc they are. They’re just changing them to what they want.

They are not being honest with taxpayers. They are giving results they want to give to fit with their agenda. Question  6 is indisputable.


Expect to hear more from Fletcher on the city survey

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4 comments to Stop tax increase petition – and how residents responded to the budget survey

  • Tom Muir

    I don’t get the Note saying 6 participants didn’t answer this question. Is that the unsure question, or what? – but there are only 5 questions that I can see!

    Raw numbers say 300 for increased taxes; 439 for reduced taxes. Looks like overall reduced taxes wins .Beware Including the 68 “unsure” anywhere as this introduces Self-selection bias , or Non-response bias.

    Wikipedia says.

    Self-selection (see also Non-response bias), which is possible whenever the group of people being studied has any form of control over whether to participate (as current standards of human-subject research ethics require for many real-time and some longitudinal forms of study).

    Participants’ decision to participate may be correlated with traits that affect the study, making the participants a non-representative sample. For example, people who have strong opinions or substantial knowledge may be more willing to spend time answering a survey than those who do not.

    Another example is online and phone-in polls, which are biased samples because the respondents are self-selected. Those individuals who are highly motivated to respond, typically individuals who have strong opinions, are over-represented, and individuals that are indifferent or apathetic are less likely to respond.

    This often leads to a polarization of responses with extreme perspectives being given a disproportionate weight in the summary. As a result, these types of polls are regarded as unscientific.

    Anyone think this is like Burlington’s population.?
    And that they have control over participating, or not, or have strong opinions.
    The sampling method is on-line, or could be phone-in, so have that bias.

    This looks a lot like the City Budget Survey to me.

    Editor’s note: It was taken from the city survey.

    • Tom Muir

      The results have to be taken from the city survey. That is a given

      Does the real survey have 6 questions or just 5? If just 5 and not 6, then the results reported here have to be biased.

      I really meant to say the results looked like what I think the population of Burlington would produce as I believe they are self -selected, and non-responding in tendency, and so the sample is biased and gives biased results.

      My concluding questions are all thought by me to be true enough to make results of the city survey biased.

      That’s just the way it is in statistics.

      Sorry for any confusion.

      Editor’s note: Why is it that we have to spell out everything for you? We published the result from one of the questions – there were many more and in the fullness of time we will publish the rest. It is 10:10 pm – I would lie at least some of the rest of this day for myself – if you don’t mind.

  • Michael Hribljan

    Keep up the great work. I had a look at the survey that was completed for the 2023 tax year back in January, and likewise the results of that survey were ignored. I suspect some people have stopped spending their time on City surveys when our politicians don’t listen to the results and spin it to support their agenda.

    • Wendy Fletcher

      The problem is that MMW is referring to this specific survey in her press releases. How can one refer to something that says something very different to what you’re saying and claim it supports you?