FAIRFIELD — The town’s Budget Committee will review a proposed budget of nearly $5.2 million for the upcoming fiscal year on Saturday.

Town Manager Michelle Flewelling said the Town Council has been working on the budget for 2018-2019 and submitted it for review to the Budget Committee, which will go through it Saturday morning and into the afternoon.

The overall budget has been reduced about $82,000 from the previous year, she said, largely because of a change in waste management. In the past, the town worked with the Penobscot Energy Recovery Co., also known as PERC, an Orrington-based company that collects and disposes of solid municipal waste. Last year the town budgeted about $364,000 to pay PERC. The contract with PERC ends in 2018, and while the town won’t have to pay that amount, there will continue to be a small budget for some municipal tonnage to be removed.

There were benefits that came from working with PERC. Last year, Flewelling said, the town received $315,000 in PERC revenue, as PERC generates energy by processing the waste.

The sale of a property on Eskelund Drive also reduced the budget, Flewelling said. With the sale, bond payments on the property ended.

Flewelling said the municipal budget alone was just under $5.2 million. About $2.8 million would be covered by taxes, and the rest by revenue, she said.

Increases to medical insurance costs and wages for union workers are factored in, she said, but town officials have no idea yet what the school or county budgets will be, so she couldn’t say how the property tax rate will be affected.

The public meeting, scheduled to last five hours, is just one step in a process that will lead to finalizing the budget ahead of Town Meeting, scheduled for for May 14. The meeting begins at 8 a.m. and will conclude at 2 p.m.

After the Budget Committee meeting, the town will start posting notices of public hearings on the budget in accordance with the new town charter, Flewelling said. This will allow the public to weigh in on the budget well ahead of Town Meeting, she said. Town residents will also receive mailings with explanations of the budget as well, in accordance with the charter.

Colin Ellis — 861-9253

[email protected]

Twitter: @colinoellis

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