WINTHROP — When voters return to the polls Tuesday, they’ll see a proposed school budget that is $116,000 less than the one rejected June 12.

The 2012-13 budget was turned down 712-680 at the polls.

The revised budget moves some items to different funding sources and postpones half a technology payment.

It cuts $5,000 from grade school supplies and eliminates $5,000 budgeted for hazardous materials removal since the project was completed this year.

The reduced school budget proposal coupled with the $2.3 million municipal budget, which includes the county tax, means the town’s taxpayers would pay roughly 4 percent more next year.

The new tax rate would be $14.24 per $1,000 worth of property value, according to Kevin Cookson, chairman of the town council.

The tax rate is currently $13.68 per $1,000.

School board directors and the superintendent hope the most recent reductions in the school budget proposal are enough to win approval on a second try.

If not, the next round of cuts goes deeper. Superintendent Gary Rosenthal separated those possible reductions into different options that affect students and programs.

The second option would cut funding for grade school and middle school literature books and include reductions in funding for middle school and high school athletics and co-curricular activities, as well as funding for additional students at the Capital Area Technical Center in Augusta.

Those cuts would total about $100,000.

“Any of those I would hate to do,” Rosenthal said. “Our books are in such bad shape, and I hate to take away competitive opportunities for kids.”

A third option removes funding for additional textbooks in math and literature and library books at all three schools. It also affects staffing by eliminating part-time English and physical education teaching posts and possibly a full-time middle school art teacher post, leaving the high school art teacher to handle both levels.

That would gain $140,000 and bring the school budget back to the 2011-2012 level of just over $9.5 million.

“It would result in a loss of equity for students,” Rosenthal said. “On a regional level, we are very competitive right now as shown in our ranking in U.S. News and World Report at the No. 13 high school in Maine. You don’t want to lose that strength. That’s one of the things drawing kids and families to the community.”

The new budget is just over $10 million, but some of that money is made up by other revenue sources, Rosenthal said.

Polls are open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Town Office and absentee ballots are available at the same location.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

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