June 9, 2014

Budget meeting for RSU14 - By Michelle Libby

On Wednesday, May 28, the public was invited to the budget meeting for RSU14. Approximately 50 people, including the school board, attended to discuss and vote on the budget recommendations for the 2014-2015 budget. 

The seventeen articles voted on were a precursor to the budget validation referendum, which will be on the June 10th ballot. Residents vote in Raymond at Jordan-Small Middle School and in Windham in the main gym at Windham High School, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

There wasn’t much discussion, except for a few Raymond residents who inquired about the portion of cost centers that belonged to Raymond taxpayers. 

According to a financial agreement the two towns made when they formed the RSU, Windham pays 55.53 percent of any overages and Raymond pays 44.56 percent. The percentages were based on the expenses during the three years before they merged. 

The State of Maine is only funding 97 percent of the money they promised to pay school districts, leaving the towns to fund the rest through taxes. 

The voters agreed to the recommendation to raise $3,381,898.29 which will balance the budget with a vote of 41 yes to 9 no and 1 blank ballot. That expense is used “To continue programs and services that are presently offered, that are not covered or not fully covered by the EPS (Essential Programs and Services Funding Act) allocation model, such as athletics and co-curricular activities, Advanced Placement courses.” 

The board encouraged all voters to go to the polls on June 10 to pass the budget.

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