South Portland OKs school budget by nearly 2-1 margin

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SOUTH PORTLAND — Voters on Tuesday approved a $47.7 million school budget, 861-446, according to unofficial results posted by the city clerk.

The budget approved June 14 represents an increase of about 3.4 percent over this year’s $46.1 million budget.

Residents also voted 862-433 to continue the school budget validation referendum process for another three years. Opting out would have meant the school budgets would be adopted by elected municipal officials, rather than ratified by a referendum vote.

Taxpayers will be expected to cover $40.1 million of the school budget, which represents an increase of about $893,000, or 2.3 percent more, and adds 33 cents to the mil rate.

The overall increase to the school budget was defrayed slightly when the district received $7,000 more than expected in May from the state through General Purpose Aid, which increased about $600,000 over this year. In total, the district will receive around $7.5 million in state aid. 

Coupled with the municipal budget of $32.6 million, residents can expect to see an increase in their taxes of 48 cents per $1,000 in valuation. The tax rate is expected to increase 2.8 percent, to $17.88 from $17.40.

On Wednesday morning, School Board Chairman Dick Matthews said he was “very happy the budget passed,” and called it “extremely responsible.”

Approximately 7 percent, or 1,318 of the city’s 19,170 registered voters, cast ballots Tuesday.

Primaries

None of the city’s legislative primaries were contested.

State Sen. Rebecca Millett, D-Cape Elizabeth, won her third nomination in Senate District 29, which covers Cape Elizabeth, South Portland and Scarborough. Her Republican Daniel Fortin of South Portland withdrew from the race June 9.

Lois Reckitt won Democratic nod in House District 31, and Colton Gross won the Republican nomination. House District 31 includes the northeastern part of the city. 

In House District 32, which covers southern South Portland and part of northern Cape Elizabeth, state Rep. Scott Hamann, D-South Portland, won his third nomination. Isaac Misiuk, a member of the South Portland Planning Board, is the Republican candidate. 

First-term state Rep. Kevin Battle, R-South Portland, was nominated for re-election in House District 33, which covers the northwestern part of the city. His opponent will be City Councilor Brad Fox, who won the Democratic nomination. 

Alex Acquisto can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or aacquisto@theforecaster.net. Follow Alex on Twitter: @AcquistoA

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South Portland and Scarborough reporter for The Forecaster. Graduate of Western Kentucky University and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. Alex can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106.
  • beachmom H

    Aaaand there go property taxes up, up up. When people wise up?