Residents have rejected a budget that included money for extra school security in the wake of the December school shootings, with town leaders suggesting the spending and required tax increases were a hard sell.
Voters on Tuesday turned down the $72 million school budget by 482 votes and rejected the $39 million town government budget by 62 votes. Nearly 4,500 residents voted on the plans, which would have represented an increase of more than 5 percent next fiscal year.
First Selectwoman Patricia Llodra said the killings of 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School had an impact on the vote, the first since the massacre.
"We're very fragile as a community," she said. "We've lost some of our confidence."
Officials had put an extra $770,000 in the school and town budgets to hire extra police officers and unarmed security guards in each of Newtown's public and private schools. The plan was spurred by the Dec. 14 shootings.
Some may be willing to give up liberty for security, but apparently the majority are aren't willing to part with more of their hard-earned tax dollars.