MANCHESTER — Residents will have an opportunity to vote on this year’s municipal budget, as well two warrant items pertaining to town signage and solar farms, during an upcoming annual Town Meeting on Thursday.

The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Manchester Elementary School.

Town Manager Patrick Gilbert said this year’s budget is essentially flat compared to last year’s $2,029,853 budget. The total increase is $2,129.

As of Tuesday, he said the total revenues for this year are currently unknown. The town currently has $684,771 in known revenues, coming from sources such as auto and boat excise taxes, the local roads assistance program, and interest on investments.

Last year, Gilbert said the town’s actual revenue including intergovernmental sources was $1,065,678, and he anticipates that this year’s total will be similar.

“When we do our budget, we do the best budget we can do,” he said. “I create the budget, it goes through the selectmen, the budget committee, and a Town Meeting. We try to do the best budget we can, but we won’t be able to set the mill rate until we get those numbers. It won’t be until about August or September that we can pull it all together.”

And with this year’s budget containing such a subtle increase, he said there are no significant changes in specific departments or line items compared to last year.

In addition to the town budget, voters will also be able to decide if they want to enact changes to the town’s ordinance regarding signs. Proposed changes include ensuring that wall signs are placed flush with a building and do not project more than 6 inches and that they do not exceed 30 square feet or 10% of the wall area, whichever is less. Some of the prohibited signs would include moving signs, signs that create the effect of an optical illusion, signs attached to utility poles or trees, and signs unrelated to goods or services not available on the premises.

Gilbert said that the proposed changes to sign rules were not inspired by any particular event and they are the culmination of roughly a year of the town’s planning board working with citizens and listening to their questions and concerns.

Article 43 asks voters if they would approve changes to the town’s rules concerning solar farms, including allowing scale solar PV systems to occupy up to 20 acres of land as opposed to the current 10-acre limit.

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