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Rockland area school budget to be voted on June 8 at the polls

By Stephen Betts | Jun 01, 2021

The proposed $33 million 2021-2022 budget for Regional School Unit 13 will be decided by residents at the polls Tuesday, June 8.

Polls will be open from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. in Rockland, Thomaston, Owls Head, South Thomaston and Cushing.

The board voted 8-2 at its May 6 meeting to approve the $33 million spending package that represents a 3.9% ($1,252,900) increase from the voter approved 2020-2021 budget.

The $1.25 million increase is due largely to salary and benefit increases. Salary increases account for $810,000 of the increase and benefits (largely health insurance) account for another $231,000 of the budget hike. Salary and benefits for employees account for 78 to 79% of the overall RSU 13 budget.

The amount of local property taxes communities will need to raise to support the budget totals nearly $26.9 million, an increase of $845,000.

The additional local revenue to be generated by municipalities within RSU 13 is not divided equally, due to factors including changes in student enrollment by community. Rockland will see the largest increase — $347,000 — that will raise its annual payments to the district to $10.7 million. Owls Head will see the next largest increase — $243,000 — bringing its total annual payments to $3.8 million.

South Thomaston will pay an additional $137,000, bringing its annual payments to nearly $3.5 million. Cushing will pay $78,000 more, bringing its total payments to $3.9 million. Thomaston will pay $39,000 more, reaching nearly $4.9 million.

There are nine ballot items with the first article on the ballot being the overall budget.

This is a link to the sample ballot.

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Comments (4)
Posted by: Francis Mazzeo, Jr. | Jun 02, 2021 12:37

Steve, you know the saying if you have to explain it won't be understood.



Posted by: George Terrien | Jun 02, 2021 11:06

Will absentee ballots be made available?



Posted by: Stephen Betts | Jun 02, 2021 09:26

Valerie, until the pandemic, there was a public meeting held first at the high school auditorium where people would set the budget. Then it would go to referendum in all five communities. In the past two years, the high school auditorium meeting was replaced with a Zoom public hearing. Now it goes to voters at the polls. If rejected, the Board would have to decide whether to make changes and then it goes back to a referendum. That continues until a budget is approved.



Posted by: Valerie Wass | Jun 02, 2021 07:55

I do not understand why we vote on RSU 13 budget when there is another meeting usually held at the high school afterward.  The budget always passes because no one knows or goes to this but the people who want the budget to pass.  Which, it always does.



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