LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS: Why there is no debate for Greenwich BET

Submitted by Sandy Waters, President, Greenwich League of Women Voters

Dear Editor:

The League of Women Voters is holding debates for almost all contested races in this fall’s municipal elections.  However, there is no debate for the very important Board of Estimate and Taxation.  Here’s why.

BET candidate selection is a privilege of the Democratic and Republican Town Committees.  This year both parties chose candidates, and no candidate contested party selection to primary.  Therefore, all 12 nominated candidates, 6 from each party, will serve on the BET.

Importantly, voters DO determine which majority party will control BET decision making.  Of the 12 candidates on the ballot, voters may choose any 6.  The party receiving the most total votes becomes the majority party, which then elects the Chairman, Vice Chairman, and often, the Secretary.  The Chairman receives a second, tie-breaking, vote in most decisions.

As the parties may have different approaches to town spending, voters should keep this implication in mind when they go to the polls in November.

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to make those differences apparent in debate format, which is why the League will not hold a BET debate.


Sandy Waters
Greenwich League of Women Voters