Around Town

Westfield Taxpayers Association elects new president

Lisa Okscin, president of the Westfield Taxpayers Association. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

WESTFIELD – Westfield native Lisa Okscin, who was elected 2021 president of the Westfield Taxpayers Association (WTPA) earlier this month,  recently spoke with The Westfield News about the activities of the citizen group whose mission is to bring about more accountable, effective and efficient government in the city.

Okscin, a founding member of the WTPA, is a contracts manager for Greater Springfield Senior Services, where she oversees contracted providers who send home care aides to elderly consumers’ homes. She has a master’s in accounting, with a concentration in forensic accounting and fraud investigation from Western New England University.

Since forming in 2020, the WTPA has hosted two state representative candidate forums to educate voters on candidate options. They started a petition initiative to request the city to dedicate meals tax, hotel tax and 25 percent of the marijuana tax to the Road and Sidewalk Stabilization Fund. Okscin said the stabilization fund was established by the Westfield City Council in 2019 but never funded, adding that due to covid-19 restrictions and business shutdowns, the meals and hotel taxes did not play an important role in the FY21 budget.

Okscin encouraged registered voters to go to to learn more about the petitions. “We are looking to get enough signatures to get the petition questions on the next election ballot,” she said.

In another new effort, WTPA is working in conjunction with Westfield Resident Advocating for Themselves (WRAFT) to conduct a study on high water bills.

Okscin said WTPA recently requested MayorDonald F. Humason Jr. and the Westfield City Council to make all city boards and commission meetings available and accessible to all and to post meetings with closed captioning, on the city website in a timely manner.

“We hope to push for more transparency as taxpayers have a right to see where their taxes are going,” Okscin said.

To Top