FREEPORT — Voters in Regional School Unit 5 on Tuesday approved a budget of more than $29.4 million, almost entirely on the strength of support in Freeport.
Freeport voters approved the budget 917-378. Durham rejected the budget 376-142, and Pownal defeated it 204-117.
“The board is very pleased,” RSU 5 Chairman Nelson Larkins said of the final tally of 1,176 to 958. “We understand that the increase is a lot to taxpayers, but the increases are critical to what we need to accomplish in the coming year.”
The increase of $2.1 million, or 7.77 percent, will result in $1.4 million in additional property taxes in Freeport, or a 7.57 percent increase. Taxpayers will see an increase to $1.02 per $1,000 of assessed value.
Taxpayers in Durham will see an increase of 8.71 percent, to $1.45 per $1,000 of assessed value. In Pownal, there will be an increase of 8.58 percent, to $2.96 per $1,000 of assessed value.
Much of the increase comes from increases in salaries and benefits for existing employees, as well as the creation of new positions.