I urge voters in Albion, Benton, Clinton, and Fairfield to support the MSAD 49 budget today. Voting will take place in municipal polling places in each of the towns.

Administrators and school directors worked diligently and made difficult decisions in the face of mandates and funding constraints. While I am disappointed with cuts that have been made, I support of the presented budget. The Board of Directors held a public budget hearing during which members of the community were invited to offer comments or ask questions. Furthermore, on May 23 the board held a district budget meeting where residents voted to pass the budget and send it along to the final validation at the polls.

Additionally, every three years, voters are required to consider whether the school budget validation referendum process (voting at the polls) will continue. The last such vote took place for the FY 2010-11 budget year.

This year we have the opportunity to vote to discontinue the process and end its use beginning with the FY 2014-15 budget years. I will be voting to discontinue the referendum requirement for the next three years. Discontinuation will eliminate the cost of opening the polls when no other measures are before voters in the spring. Note that for the last three years, the outcomes of the district budget vote (typically held at Lawrence Junior High School) and the referendum validation (voting at the polls) have been the same each budget over the last three years has passed both in the meeting and at the polls.

Karen Kusiak

Fairfield

State Representative District 84

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