Ballot Questions

 

1. School Budget. 

– Taxes are too high, but this budget is very tight. 

2. Charter Change to add Members to the Airport Commission

- Winooski is directly impacted by our airport as it is located at the end of the runway

- We are offering them a seat on the Commission, while at the same time adding another Burlington appointee as well.  

- This gives them a seat at the table without necessarily allowing them to significantly sway votes

3. Regulating Thermal Energy

City info page

- We currently give incentives for converting to electric heat pumps for heating and cooling.  

- This would give the City the authority to also charge a fee to disincentivize keeping or choosing a fossil fuel appliance.

- No fee would be levied without and additional approval from voters with specifics about a proposal.

- The purpose is to encourage property owners to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and meet our net zero energy goals

4. Ranked Choice Voting for City Council

- Allows a voter to rank their choices in order of preference.  If there are multiple candidates, the candidate with fewest 1st choice votes is eliminated, and their 2nd choice votes are then added to the tally.  This happens in rounds until 1 candidate receives more than 50% of the vote.

- It assures the winner of the election has the support of the majority of voters. (The current threshold is a plurality with 40% of the vote).

- This avoids the spoiler effect that exists when more than 2 candidates seek office under our current system called “First Past the Post.”

- It allows for 3rd candidates to enter a race without fear of being a spoiler.

- It allows voters to cast a vote for their favorite candidate without fear that it will lead to their LEAST favorite candidate being elected.

5. Just Cause Evictions

- This is an inaccurate name as it has very little to do with evictions and is primarily targeting non-renewal of leases.

- Approval would prevent a property owner from not renewing a lease unless they can prove a violation of lease.

- Vermont is number 1 in strongest tenant rights, and non-renewal of lease is often the only option to remove a tenant who is disrupting or even harming other tenants in a building.

- If approved, any rent increase could be challenged in court and a property owner would have to prove the rent was not for the purpose of removing a tenant.

- For some tenants a court might deem a very small increase would effectively remove a tenant.

- In another case, with a different tenant, the same increase might be deemed acceptable.

- This is undefined rent control, limited on a case by case basis by the courts.

 

6. Authorizing Retail Cannabis Sales

- The State of Vermont allows Sales of Cannabis to start May 2022

- This proposal does not take full advantage of what the state allows, but will allow sales of Cannabis to start October 2022

- The reason for delay is to prevent existing integrated (medical) cannabis sale businesses from starting business before allowing other small operators (who might be BIPOC) to enter the marketplace.

 

7. Climate Justice in Building Decarbonization

- This assumes the adoption of #3 and implementation of regulating (with fees and taxes) thermal energy systems.

- We are committing to policies, programs, and incentives will focus on delivering benefits to clean energy to low and moderate income Burlingtonians, Black, Indigenous, and people of color and other disadvantaged communities.