Voters in Bath, West Bath, Arrowsic, Phippsburg, Woolwich back RSU 1 budget

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BATH — Voters in the five communities of Regional School Unit 1 ratified a $25 million fiscal 2010 budget 424-141 in a referendum on Tuesday.

Bath backed the budget 124-22; Arrowsic, 38-4; Phippsburg, 122-50; West Bath, 66-44, and Woolwich, 74-21.

“I just think that we have citizens that deeply care about making sure their kids get a great education,” Superintendent William Shuttleworth said. “And I also think that they must feel that this budget was pretty well-crafted, given the economic times that we live in.”

The budget shows an approximately 1 percent drop from current spending. Still, the $16.4 million to be raised in taxes is rising 0.74 percent, or about $120,000.

The local contribution is spread across the five communities by a formula specific to RSU 1: one-third property valuation, one-third student enrollment and one-third population of the community.

Bath sees a decrease of 1.59 percent (about $126,000), while the other communities see increases: Arrowsic, 13.62 percent (about $58,000), Phippsburg, 0.94 percent (about $27,000), West Bath 2.99 percent (about $73,000) and Woolwich 3.36 percent (about $87,000).

The budget was initially approved in a district-wide meeting on June 2. This is the district’s second budget since its formation.

Alex Lear can be reached at 373-9060 ext. 113 or

A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.