RSU 5 sends $24M budget to residents of Freeport, Pownal, Durham

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FREEPORT — The Regional School Unit 5 Board of Directors adopted a $23.9 million budget for fiscal year 2012.

The spending plan includes money for capital improvements, technology investments, curriculum materials, additional teacher and support positions, and flexible professional development time.

The board voted 9-1 for the budget on May 25, with Vice Chairman Eric Dube of Pownal opposed. He said he was in favor of either adding $50,000 for the additional professional development day or $65,000 for an additional literacy position, but not both.

At a previous budget meeting, the board voted to add $115,000 to the budget – $50,000 for an additional professional development flex day and $65,000 for an additional teaching or support position.

“My vote was not a vote against (the additional money), I just didn’t want to do it all at once,” Dube said Tuesday. “I think we should see how the professional development process works and then make changes in the future.”

He said he preferred adding the literacy support position.

Based on their cost-sharing agreement, residents in each town will face a different tax impact.

Durham residents will see an increase of $42,000 or 1.38 percent; Freeport’s taxes will increase 1.26 percent, or about $165,000; and Pownal residents face an increase of $4,000 or 0.26 percent.

The annual budget meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 8, at 6:30 p.m. in the Freeport High School gymnasium. Voters from Freeport, Pownal and Durham will have the opportunity to modify the board-adopted plan and ultimately send a final budget to a referendum vote on June 14.

Voting on June 14 will take place in Durham at the Durham Community School, 654 Hallowell Road, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

In Pownal, residents can vote at the Pownal Town Office, 429 Hallowell Road, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

In Freeport, voters can cast their ballots at Council Chambers at Freeport Town Hall, 30 Main St., from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or aanderson@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: amy_k_anderson.

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