Letter: Yarmouth faces budgetary challenges

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I know firsthand as a parent with three children in the system for the last 12 years just how special the Yarmouth school system is in regard to facilities, athletics, curriculum, and most importantly, our teachers and staff. I also recognize as a former adjunct professor how vital education is to the health and success of our community, our state, and our country, as our economy becomes increasingly global and more technology based.

Recently, our Town Council met with the Yarmouth School Committee, to discuss challenges that we face in regard to our 2013-2014 town budget. These challenges were not born from over-spending, but as the direct result of revenue burdens associated with recently announced state funding plans.

The severe fiscal crises in Washington, D.C., and the unprecedented budget proposal from Augusta, have left Yarmouth and municipalities across Maine facing enormous challenges in regard to balancing revenues and expenses. Our shared path toward finding solutions to these challenges will require an abundance of collaboration, cooperation and shared sacrifice – coupled with restraint against the urge to blame, in favor of the impulse to solve.

These discussions are only the start of a two-month budgeting process, not the end. I encourage each and every resident of Yarmouth to share your thoughts with elected officials, attend meetings, and work together toward our common goal to maintain our wonderful community resources, schools, parks, and services, while respecting and honoring the human consequence of these challenging times.

Steve Woods, chairman
Yarmouth Town Council