Yarmouth voters stamp budget at Town Meeting

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YARMOUTH — In less than an hour, voters approved the 2014 school and municipal budgets Tuesday during the annual Town Meeting.

Almost everyone in attendance voted in favor of the School Committee’s $20.8 million budget, which is a 3 percent increase from this year. A cadre of about 20 residents opposed each of the budget’s 16 articles, and many of them left before voting on the municipal budget began.

The $10.9 million municipal budget was briskly approved. The 2014 budget is a reduction of $2,400, or 0.02 percent, from 2013.

There were no substantive discussions on any articles, despite a robust turnout of about 150 voters at Frank Harrison Middle School gymnasium. During the last five years, the town budget has increased less than 0.5 percent, Town Manager Nat Tupper has said.

Before the meeting, the town honored four individuals: Interim Superintendent Ron Barker, who will continue to serve until August; Art Bell, outgoing vice chairman of Yarmouth School Committee; Marcia Noyes, who is retiring from Yarmouth Community Services after 27 years of service, and Dan Ostrye, who received Yarmouth’s annual Latchstring Award for his 25 years of work to develop Yarmouth’s West Side Trail.