LINCOLN, Maine — Voters in three towns turned down RSU 67’s school budget by a large margin on Tuesday.
A total of 326 voters from Lincoln, Mattawamkeag and Chester voted against the $12,267,722 budget, while 190 voted for it.
Lincoln residents voted against the budget 276-146. Chester rejected the budget by a vote of 28-10. Mattawamkeag voters accepted the budget 34-22.
The RSU 67 school board will now have to scramble to get a different budget approved.
“We have to go back and have another budget meeting, another validation vote and determine what effect this late of a vote will have on the upcoming school year,” said Jackie Thurlow, chairwoman of the RSU 67 school board. “We’re going to start school and not have a budget.
“We still need to take stock of where we are and how we’re going to get a budget passed,” she added.
Also on Lincoln’s ballot was a Federal Aviation Administration grant that would allow the town to purchase property at the local airport.
Lincoln voters accepted the $237,000 grant to acquire land at the airport, including a small terminal building, a nearby hangar and about five acres at the north end of the runway. The land also has a campground near the Penobscot River. The town will have to kick in $11,850 for the purchase. The measure passed 317-105.
On Monday, Mattawamkeag held its town meeting, at which three positions needed to be filled.
Former Selectman Joseph Murray earned 61 votes to win a seat on the Board of Selectmen held by Joey Grant. Grant did not take out papers to be re-elected but finished second with 37 write-in votes. Louis Ruppe, who did take out papers for the position, received 12 votes.
Wilderness Park Commissioner Edward Madden was re-elected through write-in votes.
No one took out papers to fill a vacant RSU 67 school board position, but John Whitehouse earned the most write-in votes with five. He has not come forward to either accept or decline the election, according to a town official.