June 24, 2018
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Bar Harbor voters to weigh $17M budget

By Bill Trotter, BDN Staff

BAR HARBOR, Maine — Residents are scheduled to gather this week to consider an overall $17.25 municipal budget.

Bar Harbor’s open town meeting is expected to get under way at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 1, in the gymnasium of Conners-Emerson School.

The proposed budget includes $7.25 million in education expenses from kindergarten through high school and $9.45 million for other anticipated town expenditures. The town’s tax bill from Hancock County, which is included in the overall budget figure, is expected to be $548,000.

According to information printed in the town’s annual report, $13,255,614 likely will have to be raised in local property taxes to support the proposed budget. That represents an increase of more than half a million dollars in property taxes that voters were asked to approve a year ago.

If the proposed budget is approved, the town’s tax rate is expected to increase from $8.88 for each $1,000 of a property’s value to $9.26 for each $1,000 of value, or about 4.2 percent. For a property worth $295,200, which is the median value for residential properties in Bar Harbor, the owner would see the tax bill increase by $111, according to town officials.

Tuesday’s open session of the annual town meeting will be followed a week later by elections, which will be held in conjunction with the statewide primary election. Polls for the local and state elections will be open at the municipal building on Cottage Street from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 8.

In municipal elections, five candidates will have their names on the ballot for two available Town Council seats. Incumbent Paul Paradis is running for re-election. Fellow Councilor Greg Veilleux has chosen not to run again.

In the council race with Paradis are Dessa Dancy, Matthew Horton, James Riley Jr. and Christopher Walsh.

In school board elections, Joseph “Tom” Burton and Matthew McEachern are running for two available three-year terms, and Brian Hubbell is running for one available one-year term.

Voters also will be asked on June 8 to consider revisions to the town charter, to lend $1 million to the Bar Harbor Housing Authority to help finance the Northeast Creek housing project, and whether to approve 11 proposed amendments to local land use ordinances.

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