Monson budget expected to increase slightly

Posted Feb. 25, 2011, at 2:16 p.m.

MONSON, Maine — A proposed budget of $667,253 that reflects an increase of about $2,000 will be presented to Monson residents for adoption at the annual town meeting, scheduled for 6:30 p.m. March 21 at the community building.

‘’What helped us this year is we paid off a large debt — $32,000 for the sand and salt shed,’’ Town Manager Julie Anderson said Thursday.

Town officials have worked hard to retire the debt and keep taxes as low as possible, but in the process Monson has been unable to invest in road improvements, Anderson said. Of the proposed budget, she said, ‘’We cut where we could and tried to keep the municipal budget down yet still have enough for road improvements.’’

Town officials have budgeted $50,000 for road improvements for 2011. Of that, $27,291 would come from anticipated revenues and $22,709 from surplus.

A 3 percent cost-of-living increase is being proposed for town employees, who have not had an increase in two years, according to Anderson.

The budget amount for the fire department is the same as last year, at $30,800. In addition, $52,997 is being budgeted for the fire equipment fund. Anticipated revenue includes $24,600, which represents the $8,200 charged to Willimantic, Blanchard and Elliotsville for fire protection provided by the town. Of that, $10,500 will help offset fire department expenses and the remainder will help offset the equipment fund.

As voted by residents earlier, candidates for the three-year seat on the Board of Selectmen must sign up in the town office prior to March 11. Other positions open include two three-year positions on the Board of Appeals, two five-year positions on the Monson Utilities District, one three-year seat on the Planning Board, and two three-year seats on the Gym Committee.

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