FARMINGDALE — Selectmen voted Wednesday to increase the property tax rate by 80 cents per $1,000 property valuation, citing the costs of schools, oil and electricity.

Last year’s tax rate was $13 per $1,000; this year, it’s $13.80.

“It’s not as bad as we anticipated,” Board of Selectmen Chairman David Sirois said.

Voters on June 7 approved paying $1,630,631 for Farmingdale’s share of the Regional School Unit 2 budget, which was $132,896 more than selectmen had planned on. RSU 2 had asked Farmingdale for the additional money to help make up the loss of money from state coffers and other increases in expenses, such as the cost of oil.

In other business Wednesday, selectmen:

* said they are waiting to get cost estimates for removing asbestos from the Harrison property on Maine Avenue, for which voters approved a transfer of up to $10,000 from the capital improvement account June 25 at Town Meeting;

* said they have received a couple of letters of interest for the position of animal control officer after Jeff Ellis announced his resignation effective at the end of July;

* said they will send letters to four property owners who owe back taxes, asking them to pay; and

* voted to reimburse a third resident for administrative sewer-line fees on a sewer line the town recently abandoned.

The line — installed in 2005 at a cost of $63,000 — was never used because three accounts did not purchase a commercially available pump and holding tank to connect to it.

Selectmen voted to reimburse the other two accounts in June.

Joyce Grondin is a Kennebec Journal correspondent who lives in Augusta.


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