Thomas Busa, who was first appointed to the Finance Committee in 2003, closed out the committee’s final meeting of 2021by reminding members of their responsibilities as independent investigators and presenters.
He urged that the committee continued to use “due diligence,” and added, “I will be resigning as of tonight.”
The committee unanimously entered a declaration of appreciation in the meeting minutes, and members took turns praising their colleague. “You’ve been a great leader and a great mentor and have always been upfront,” said Elizabeth McClung.
Busa served briefly on the Capital Expenditure Committee before he was appointed to finance. He served as chair for several consecutive years and often was considered one of the more fiscally conservative members. His current term expires on June 20, 2022.
Thursday he successfully moved that the committee adopt a 2.5 percent increase for town departments as a fiscal 2023 budget guideline, as well as a 3.25 increase for the education budget.
In his valedictory, Busa praised town professional managers “who provide valuable information for us.” But he reminded his colleagues that “we don’t answer to the School Committee or the superintendent of schools or the town manager or the selectmen. Our obligation is to come up with a budget that we feel reflects our due diligence. It’s our obligation to dig down and come up with the numbers to present to the town,” and not just rubber-stamp departmental requests.
Busa and his wife recently sold their home, and in answer to a question from one colleague Thursday, he said he might be moving out of Bedford. He grew up in Lexington, where his father Alfred served as a selectman.
Mike Rosenberg can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 781-983-1763