On June 22, the Edgecomb School Committee reached a consensus on building a small cushion in the next budget by asking taxpayers for a 0.5% increase for fiscal year 2021. The increase of approximately $13,500 was intended to mitigate any unexpected changes in the Maine economy or expected state school subsidies. But less than 24 hours later, the committee changed its mind.
On June 23, Alternative Organizational Structure 98 Superintendent Dr. Keith Laser was discussing the warrants’ language with a school attorney who advised him the state had pledged more school funding for fiscal year 2021 to Edgecomb.
“We did not have that amount in our calculation on Monday evening. With the additional funding, I did not believe that we needed the increase to the assessment and discussed that with the board chair (Tom Abello) around 1 p.m. yesterday (June 23). He agreed verbally to no increase in assessment,” Laser said in an email to Boothbay Register June 24.
Abello polled the other two committee members who agreed not to seek a 0.5% increase from local taxpayers. The committee will finalize its budget recommendation at 6 p.m. Monday, June 29.
In the June 25 print edition, a page 4 headline on coverage of the June 22 meeting was based on information the night of the meeting.