VASSALBORO — Vassalboro residents will be paying slightly more taxes this year, after selectmen approved the new rate at a special meeting Wednesday morning.

The figure has gone from $15.45 per $1,000 of assessed property value in the fiscal year that just ended to $15.60 per $1,000 for the current year, an increase of 15 cents. Town Manager Mary Sabins said taxes in Vassalboro are always committed at this time of year, which is after the county tax and state subsidies have been finalized and the town assessor has gotten all the records in order.

In June, voters authorized a $2,321,000 municipal budget and $7,703,908 school budget.

Alewives swim in a holding pen at the top of a fish ladder at the Webber Pond dam in Vassalboro on May 20. Voters approved at Town Meeting on June 3, $7,500 to go toward making modifications at the China Lake Outlet Dam to help create a fishway and $47,500 will be put toward the Alewife Restoration Initiative more generally. Portland Press Herald file photo by Gregory Rec

The school budget is down about $27,000 from last year, which Superintendent Alan Pfiefer attributed to having fewer high school freshmen this year than graduating seniors last year. Vassalboro pays for high school students to enroll at the school of their choice, as its only public school — Vassalboro Community School — serves pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

The municipal budget, on the other hand, increased by about $258,000 this year, according to the town report, with the biggest increases coming from public works, capital improvements and reserves, paving and maintenance, and miscellaneous accounts.

The public works increase included adding a part-time employee — Vassalboro resident Mike Petito — who also works part-time at the transfer station. The bulk of the capital improvements and reserves spending is for the purchase of a new plowing and sanding truck, which the town also budgeted for last year and will cost no more than $122,450.

Voters approved $34,035 of repairs to the town’s road grader as well as $390,062 to pave all or part of Nelson and Whitehouse roads. Leftover funds from the grader repairs will be put toward paving part of the public works garage driveway, while the remaining balance from the paving work will go toward road striping and paving projects, as directed by the board of selectmen. Last year’s total paving budget was $373,940.

Part of the miscellaneous budget expenditures include $55,000 from the Alewife reserves, which is funded through grants and donations. Per voter approval at Town Meeting on June 3, $7,500 of those funds will go toward making modifications at the China Lake Outlet Dam to help create a fishway and $47,500 will be put toward the Alewife Restoration Initiative more generally. Last year, voters approved putting $7,500 toward the dam project, but no other alewife-related expenses. The fishway is estimated to cost $370,000, according to a report from The Town Line.

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