WINTHROP — Voters rejected the $10.2 million school budget at the polls Tuesday by 32 votes.

Some 712 people voted against affirming the 2012-2013 budget which was a $365,000 increase over the current year. Some 680 people voted in favor of it.

The rejection will be the topic of an emergency school board meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Town Office.

“My concern and I think a lot of people’s  concern is the fact that there’s been seemingly a bit of confusion about the vote that happened yesterday,” Superintendent Gary Rosenthal said Wednesday morning. “A lot of people thought the municipal budget was also on the ballot. Over the course of the week, there’s been some concern and some confusion about this whole budget process and I think we got caught in the crossfire.”

Rosenthal said he was surprised at the defeat. “No individuals at our public hearing expressed any concerns, so we felt very comfortable with what we were bringing to voters. It was an increase but wholly on the special education side.”

He said he expects the dollar figures to get reaffirmed Thursday night, and to bring the budget back to the voters the last week in June.

“The key is to do a better job of educating the public,” he said.


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