Letter: Shrewsbury Breaks Word To Senior Citizens

  • Comments (3)

SHREWSBURY, Mass. — The Shrewsbury Daily Voice accepts letters to the editor. Signed letters may be emailed to shrewsbury@dailyvoice.com.

To The Editor:

The Town of Shrewsbury has broken its word to our senior citizens. At the Jan. 22 Board of Selectmen meeting, a SELCO representative announced the senior citizen discount for cable services will be discontinued. Present senior subscribers will see their cable fees gradually increased while new senior subscribers will never receive the discount.

Shrewsbury senior citizens have seen huge fee and tax increases, enduring increases in trash fees, previous cable fee increases, water taxes, sewer taxes, property taxes and debt exclusion taxes. These increases amount to over $600 per year, six times greater than the new middle school tax increase.

In addition to the onerous fees and taxes, seniors have faced increases in home heating fuel, gasoline taxes, electric bills and massive increases in food costs.   Seniors have seen the value of their Social Security payments dwindle due to two years of no increase in their monthly Social Security while their Medicare premiums have increased.  Meanwhile, some town employees have seen annual salary increases of 2, 4, 7 and even 12 percent.

To have the new fees stopped, present and  future seniors must make their views known by writing, emailing and calling SELCO and the town administration demanding the higher cable fees for seniors be canceled.

The senior citizen cable discount was agreed to by the Shrewsbury town government. A time limit was absent in the agreement. The town government should honor its agreement and rescind the senior citizen cable fee increases.

- Benjamin W. Tartaglia Sr.,

Town Meeting Member, Precinct 6.

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Comments (3)


Don't tell Selco...been using this for free for years.

Got all the equipment off CraigsList at a very low or free cost.

6 TV's in my house all getting 20 channels.....and on-demand tv such as Hulu for the rest if I want to use my computer as a TV.

Isn't Mr. Tartaglia's mantra to "live within your means?" If SELCO needs to cut costs, unfortunately, discounts are an appropriate place to close budget gaps. Cable tv is a nice-to have feature in many people's lives, but is by no means a necessity. We CAN choose to live without cable tv.

And the pay-as-you-throw issue has really proven to be a non-issue. I'm as cheap as they come, but do think it's fair that I pay for my trash. I make more than my elderly neighbor, therefore I should and do pay more.

We can't have it both ways, Mr. T. If you want town departments to live within what you think are their means, they have to cut costs. The school department isn't the only department where can can be made.

Hopefully we see a nice post soon from the author of this letter praising SELCO for dropping everyone's electric rates by 4% starting next month. It's easy to attack SELCO for something that seems cruel on one level, but with their low rates, seniors couldn't move anywhere else and get cable cheaper - even at the new rates, so I continue to applaud SELCO for doing what is needed to stay below the "big guy" companies. The author has talked extensively about responsible taxes, so I thought he would be pleased to see that SELCO is generating the funds they need to remain viable in the realm of a recreational expenditure (television) as opposed to electricity.