Monroe Voters Reject Major Education Cuts

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Residents of Monroe went to the polls on Tuesday and voted down a referendum that would have affected the school budget and could have led to $1 million in cuts to education funding.

Earlier this month, Monroe First Selectman Steve Vavrek proposed $950,000 in cuts for the town and $870,000 are from the education budget.

"It's a massacre on 3,000 children in our schools. It's disgraceful," Alan Vaglivelo, a member of Monroe’s board of education, said.

Parents feared cuts would force layoffs, create larger classes and require paying for sports.

"We already sustained some pretty heavy damage to our district last year, so if you combine that with what happened last year … it will just completely change our district toward the negative," Amy Primorac, of Monroe, said.

Residents previously voted on the budget on April 6 and it was not approved. More than 5,500 people voted and the budget was short by 439 votes. This time, the budget proposal lost by 200 votes.

Monroe is certainly not the only town in the state reeling from a shortage when it comes to education funding.

On Monday night in Milford, district officials presented a plan to close a $2.2 million budget gap, which includes closing an elementary school, and cutting 45 jobs.

“The central focus that people are not talking about are the children. I'm hearing about dollars. I'm hearing about jobs, and I'm not hearing what's best for the education of Milford's kids,” Bridget Lawless, of Milford, said.

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