Residents to have say on midcoast school budgets next week

Posted May 23, 2013, at 7:30 p.m.

School district budget hearings are scheduled for next week across the midcoast.

Regional School Unit 13’s proposed 2013-2014 budget faces its districtwide vote at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Oceanside High School East in Rockland.

The meeting is open to registered voters of Rockland, Thomaston, St. George, Owls Head, South Thomaston and Cushing.

Voters can amend the budget recommended by the school board at the meeting. At the polls in the six communities on Tuesday, June 11, voters will be faced with a yes or no, single-ballot question on whether to adopt the budget crafted at the May 28 meeting.

The board has recommended a $27,017,562 budget that represents an increase of 2 percent, or $554,862, from the voter-approved 2012-2013 budget. The amount of property taxes to pay for the budget is up $502,115 for the six communities of RSU 13. Rockland will be shouldering the largest portion of that increase.

The proposed budget calls for several positions to be cut, including an art teacher, a social studies teacher and a resource room teacher, and the reduction of a technology teacher to half-time, all at Oceanside High School East.

A social studies teaching position at Oceanside West in Thomaston is also up for elimination, as well as an interventionist teacher being reduced to half-time at Oceanside West. Three elementary classroom teachers would also be cut — two at the South School in Rockland and one at the St. George School.

At 6 p.m. Tuesday at Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport, the proposed School Administrative District 28 budget — which serves kindergarten through eighth grade in Camden and Rockport — will go before residents.

The SAD 28 board has recommended a $12,310,000 budget for 2013-2014, up less than 1 percent from the budget approved last year by voters.

The budget cuts a physical education/health teacher, four and a half educational technician positions and a special education teacher. A guidance position was reduced to half time and a computer integration position was cut.

The Five-Town School District, which oversees the high school that serves Camden, Rockport, Hope, Appleton and Lincolnville, will hold its district budget meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, also at Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport.

The proposed CSD budget approved by the board was $11,419,000, up 2 percent from the budget approved by voters last year.

The CSD budget had a librarian position cut to half-time and a custodial position reduced.

The budgets approved at those meetings on Tuesday night will also go to the voters at the polls on June 11.

And Regional School Unit 40 — which covers Waldoboro, Warren, Union, Washington and Friendship — holds its districtwide budget meeting and vote at 7 on Tuesday evening.

The RSU 40 Board has recommended a budget of $22.2 million for 2013-2014, which is less than a 1 percent increase.

The proposed budget cuts an occupational therapist. Those services will be provided by contracting with an outside provider.

The meeting will be at Medomak Valley High School in Waldoboro.

The validation referendum will also be June 11 for RSU 40.

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