NORTH ANSON — Residents in School Administrative District 74 rejected a $9.23 million budget for the 2014-2015 school year on Tuesday.

The budget was turned down 117-102 in a referendum, with only one town in the district giving approval. Whether the budget is adopted is based on the total number of votes from the five communities — Anson, Embden, New Portland, North Anson and Solon.

Voters in Anson and North Anson, which are parts of the same town, rejected the budget 69-55; in Embden, 20-10; and New Portland, 18-10. It passed in Solon, 27-10. The budget will now go back to the school board for revision and will need to be approved by voters in a second referendum.

Voters also rejected a $2 million bond for repairs at Carrabec High School by an overall vote of 112-107. It was rejected by voters in Anson and North Anson, 65-49; Embden, 19-11; and New Portland, 18-10. It was approved in Solon, 27-10.

The proposed $9.23 million budget represents a 1.74 percent increase from the current budget of $9,080,713. The increases come largely from changes in state funding, including increased costs for charter schools, a shift to local districts paying teacher retirement costs and a decrease in the amount of state funding, according to Ken Coville, SAD 74 superintendent.

It also includes the elimination of two teaching positions at the high school and a reduction in hours for the high school principal. The elimination of the teaching positions, which will not require layoffs because two teachers are retiring, is expected to save the district $100,000, while a restructuring of administration is expected to save about $70,000.

The restructuring includes changing the high school principal position from full-time to part-time and combining other positions at the high school and Carrabec Community School.

In 2014-2015 the district will face increased costs to send students to charter schools and is budgeting $72,000 for that. Also included in the budget is $105,000 for teacher retirement costs, a cost that the district recently picked up after a statewide shift in retirement costs from being 100 percent funded by the state to being a cost shared with local districts.

The budget included $719,822 for kindergarten-through-grade 2 instruction, $1,396,477 for instruction in grades 3-8, $1,336,728 for grades 9-12 instruction, $39,371 in elementary school library costs, $74,048 for the high school library, $360,665 for elementary administration, $248,896 for administration at Carrabec High School, $692,374 for transportation and $257,105 for the office of the superintendent.

Rachel Ohm — 612-2368 | [email protected]


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