May 20, 2018
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SAD 70 residents to vote on lower school budget

By Jen Lynds, BDN Staff

HODGDON, Maine — Taxpayers in SAD 70 will see a school budget that is down $150,000 from last year when they go to the polls June 9.

SAD 70 Superintendent Robert McDaniel said Thursday this year’s $6.3 million budget will be voted on by taxpayers in the seven district towns throughout the day.

The district serves Amity, Cary Plantation, Haynesville, Hodgdon, Linneus, Ludlow and New Limerick.

District voters have not approved any state-mandated consolidation plan. As a result, the district is being hit with an $88,000 penalty for not complying with the law.

The district also is seeing fewer educational dollars because of state cutbacks and the Essential Programs and Services, or EPS, funding formula that McDaniel said is “not friendly to rural schools.”

McDaniel said the budget is down for a number of reasons, including a reduction in staffing by 5 1/5 positions. The superintendent said the reductions included two retiring teachers who will not be replaced and elimination of one elementary school teaching position. Another such position was reduced.

McDaniel said the assessments to all of the towns are down, with the exception of Linneus.

As far as the district’s consolidation status goes, McDaniel said the district is waiting to see what voters decide during a statewide referendum on school district consolidation this November.

The June 9 vote will take place at the regular polling places in each town in the district.

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