Orono to vote on school budget on Tuesday

Posted June 10, 2013, at 5:18 p.m.

ORONO, Maine — Voters in Orono will have the opportunity on Tuesday to accept or reject the school district’s budget.

RSU 26, which will consist only of Orono schools beginning on July 1, has proposed a budget of $11,525,671 for the 2013-2014 school year, an increase of $2,853,354 from this year’s school budget.

Locals will be responsible for $5,674,080 of that budget, an increase of $553,130 from this year.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the town office.

On July 1, Veazie and Glenburn will leave RSU 26 and become their own school districts once again.

The move has saddled Orono taxpayers with a budget increase for the next school year.

“Part of the reason [for the increase] is the other towns are leaving the RSU,” RSU 26 Superintendent Douglas Smith said on Monday. He will become Glenburn’s superintendent beginning next month.

One position will be eliminated, Smith said, as the curriculum coordinator will be let go.

The ballot also has a second question. Voters will be asked if they would like to continue the budget validation referendum process in place for another three years.

A yes vote would keep the current process in place, where a districtwide budget meeting is held to set the budget figure. Then a budget validation referendum vote is held at the polls to approve the budget.

A no vote would discontinue the process for at least three years, and the budget instead will be adopted at an annual public meeting.

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