RSU 13 budget passes second test

By Kim Lincoln | Aug 13, 2013
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham Wayne Crandall of Rockland casts his ballot Aug. 13 on the RSU 13 budget. By noon, 180 ballots had been cast at Rockland Recreation Center out of a total of 4,859 registered voters. At the June vote, a total of 139 ballots were cast. Looking on is Election Clerk Pat Harden.

Rockland — Voters in the six towns of Regional School Unit 13 voted to approve the school budget Aug. 13 after a second time at the polls.

Voters approved a $27.2 million budget, up more than 2 percent from last year, which represents a 1.2 percent increase to the six towns in the district. The towns will raise $22.3 million locally.

It passed with a total vote of 737 in favor and 622 against. St. George, Cushing and Thomaston voted in favor of the spending package while Owls Head, South Thomaston, and Rockland voted against it.

The votes break down as follows:

South Thomaston — 46 yes, 49 no

Cushing — 41 yes, 29 no

Owls Head — 58 yes, 100 no

Thomaston — 88 yes, 57 no

Rockland — 168 yes, 342 no

St. George — 336 yes, 45 no

A vote in June on a $27.1 million budget failed by 12 votes. The school board went back to the drawing board, making additional cuts to present a $26.9 million budget.

After the district learned it would receive additional state subsidy, voters at a July 24 public meeting voted to add the funds, totaling $334,162, to the instruction budget to restore teaching positions at St. George School and Oceanside High School East.

Owls Head will see the largest increase at 6.39 percent or $152,709 for a total of $2,541,109, while St. George will see the the biggest decrease at $31,401, paying $4,118,623. Rockland would be expected to pay $7.6 million, up $122,000; South Thomaston would pay $2.54 million, up $36,500; Cushing would see a $6,800 increase at $2.56 million and Thomaston would pay $18,744 less than last year for a total of $3.2 million.

Courier Publications Copy Editor Kim Lincoln can be reached at 594-4401 or by email at

Comments (6)
Posted by: Buddy Carleton | Aug 15, 2013 22:02


Good point Mike M! If you can't afford to pay an extra $1.50 per month, or whatever it works out to, you probably can't afford the home you're living in.    But the good news is, if you are absolutely destitute and unable to pay for your taxes (and you can prove it) there is financial assistance available.  Also, there is the Property Tax and Renters Rebate Program.  Of course, by time time Governor Le Page gets finished  with it, there probably won't BE a rebate program!

By the way, I did NOT support OR vote for Paul Le Page.  Now those who did are crying because he cut out much of the state's supplementation of our school budget.  In my opinion, this is where the blame should go; not to our schools whose budget increased our taxes by (as above) 1/2 of 1%.  Come on!  EVERYTHING is going up with inflation.

Am I supposed to go to the grocery store and say that I'll pay ONLY for the price of last year's milk?   Good luck with that!  And good luck paying last year's tax rate.  Let me know how that works for you.  SUBMITTED BY:  PAM LEACH, ROCKLAND

Posted by: Sonja Sleeper | Aug 14, 2013 19:20

This is a good example of why one should get out to vote, a small minority took over and got out the vote to win their case and stick others with the bill.  It will be interesting to see how this hashes out.  Incidentally, if you forgot, St George voted to withdraw from RSU 13 at their last town meeting.  They have already started the process, which begs the question why do what they did?


Posted by: Aimee Liberty | Aug 14, 2013 08:06

When all was said and done, the taxes in Rockland went up 10 cents per $1000 valued.  If you figure it our, that is a 1/2 percent raise in our taxes.  To be able to save jobs, and give our FUTURE a better education, I would much rather spend it on the school system then some of the foolish projects that we continue to fund in this city.  If you can't afford the extra $1.50 or so a month in your "raised" tax bill, then you probably shouldn't have purchased the house in the first place. 

Posted by: glen r thompson | Aug 14, 2013 07:43

A note to the good people from Cushing, Thomaston, and particularly St Georges who voted YES and obviously can see no farther than the tip of their noses: a matter of time and you will be next!

Posted by: Susan Sinclair | Aug 14, 2013 05:42

And then your property will be sold to someone who can afford to live in it, and you will be free of all obligations. Win win!

Posted by: Susan P Reitman | Aug 13, 2013 22:07

For the 622 residents who voted "NO" to approve the RSU-13 school budget I suggest you join me in refusing to pay an increase in your real estate taxes.  I belong to the Rockland Tax Club and have only been paying the amount I paid last year.  This will take a lot of courage on your part.  You will have it said that you do not care about the children.  The town you live in will threaten you with liens on your property.  The way I see it with holding money is the only way to fight higher real estate taxes that many people cannot afford to pay,

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