For years, Killingworth voters have voted on the budget at a town meeting.
That will not happen this year.
Former first selectman Gerald Lucas has successfully collected 275 (200 necessary) signatures to require the 2012-2013 budget be voted on by referendum.
In a press release sent Thursday, Killingworth resident Richard T. Ross, identifying himself as the spokesman for Lucas' Killingworth Watchdog Group, claimed that voting at a town meeting was "intimdating" because "raising their hand pits one neighbor against another."
Ross also said residents complained that the time of the meeting — 8 p.m. — was "inconvenient."
which is 4.5 percent lower than current spending.
In an interview with the Middletown Press, first selectman Cathy Iino questioned the rationale for the petition, indicating that residents might have been given incorrect information by the people collecting signatures.
A referendum, she told the newspaper, could cost $3,000 to $4,000.
Iino said the town's mill rate would increase by about 2 mills under the current budget proposal, but that 90 percent of residents would see a decrease in their tax bill.