Cape proposes $8.9M municipal-side budget

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CAPE ELIZABETH — Town Manager Mike McGovern has submitted a preliminary $8.9 million municipal budget that would increase property taxes by 1.2 percent. The Town Council is expected to discuss the budget proposal at a meeting March 14.

The schools are proposing a $21 million budget for fiscal year 2012.

The proposed 2012 municipal budget is $357,000 higher than this year and would result in a 5-cent increase to the tax rate, bringing it from $4.01 to $4.06 per $1,000 assessed property value.

“After three years of declining tax rates, this spending and service plan increases taxes for municipal services by 1.2 percent,” McGovern said in the budget proposal sent to the council on Feb. 22. “The proposed additional spending in this budget is targeted at maintaining Fort Williams Park, providing better maintenance for our buildings, replacing some of our older equipment and providing a small cost of living adjustment of 2% for our employees after most of them received no increase last year.”

According to McGovern, major budget changes include $83,000 in additional maintenance at Fort Williams; $60,000 in municipal building maintenance and heating needs; nearly $100,000 in funding for ongoing capitol needs; $92,000 for the 2-percent cost of living adjustment; $49,500 in added contribution to the retirement system; $23,000 in gasoline and diesel fuel; and $13,000 for a seasonal parks and trails position.

Reductions in expenditures come from debt service savings and reductions in ecomaine fees and elimination of a half-time town office position.

On the revenue side, the budget includes a 6 percent, or $200,000 increase, in revenue from sources other than property taxes.

About $140,000 of additional revenue will come from the undesignated fund balance; $74,000 from the Maine State Revenue Sharing; and $37,000 in excise tax income.

McGovern said investment income and revenue from building permits are expected to decline by $51,000.

The Finance Committee, which every member of the Town Council belongs to, will begin to review the 2012 budget proposal in workshops beginning March 16. 

At the meeting on Monday, March 14, the council is also expected to address work plans submitted by committees and commissions and discuss ways to enhance communication between the Planning Board and the Ordinance Committee.

The meeting starts at 7:30 p.m. and will be held in the Town Hall Council Chambers.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or aanderson@theforecaster.net

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