School budget vote tomorrow - do not not vote or vote yes or because you are tired of the runaround. 

By Sonja Sleeper | Aug 12, 2013

Round two,  of the budget battle. 

Before you vote some information to share for your consideration:

School budget has a boost because they recieved more state funds than anticipated.  Initially they were going to reduce charges to area towns but the Town of St. George mde a motion and the crown voted to increase budget the same amount as the state subsidy, saying they wanted it for teachers.  Things you should know, with the funding structure as it is, the residents of St. George will not have to pay for the increased costs, Rockland, Owls Head, South Thomaston and Thomaston will pay more in taxes to cover the 342,000 dollar increase.  It also should be noted that the school does not have to use the money to keep or hire teachers.  By the way two positions discussed cost the District 112,000 in salary and benefits. Also please note all school staff, including teachers are getting a 2 - 2.5% raise in this budget, There were no real changes in the basic budget, they just eliminated a proposed position and took money from another reserve fundeven before the increase in subsidy, even with the revised budget and additional increase. 

In my opinion, this is still a bad budget, but it is going through a good process.  If this budget gets voted down, round three, four, five, ok.  Because there is supposed to be a proposal, debate and long drawn out arguments leading to a resolution or even a draw that is how things are supposed to be. It would be better to have more input before the writing up of the budget, more comment and changes at the budget approval meeting and then the basic up or down vote at the public referendum.  But since there wasn't another election is taking place again tomorrow.  On the plus side attendance has gone up with the second round.  The budget approval meeting went from about 40 to about 100, but it is the same base, namely school employees and parents, and just a few who say it costs too much.  There should be more participation by all residents, not just school employees and parents, especially those of voting age.  The roughly 300 who voted the last time was a sad, no pathetic turnout given the population in the district, hence my title, do not not vote because you don't care, are tired or feel uninformed.  Get out there and vote,  yes or no.  But don't vote yes because you are tired of the argument either. 

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