By Sue Ellen Woodcock
Tuesday night Town Manager James McKenna presented the town council with the proposed general fund and operating budget fiscal year 2017, which begins July 1. The proposed budget is roughly $56.71 million. The budget is balanced with general fund expenditures supported by revenues of $46,652,447. The remainder of the budget comes from enterprise funds for the harbormaster, water and sewer, the ferry, recreation and the ice rink.
A public hearing on the proposed budget will be held at the May 17 town council meeting. Revenue is up four percent over last year with $44,839,044 for FY16 and $46,652, 447 recommended for FY17. This is the seventh budget McKenna has been involved with.
Sixty-five percent of the budget revenue comes from property taxes and 23 percent from state aid. In FY16 state aid was $10,453,903 and for FY17 it is expected to be $10,659,998
The education department takes 49 percent of the budget expenditures and public safety coming in second with 15 percent of the expenditure. For FY17 the education budget has increased by 25.1 percent. Much of the increase is due to moving employee benefits from “shared expenses” column for the town to the school department budget. The actual school budget request for FY17 rose only four percent.
The entire budget can be seen in detail on the town’s website, under the accounting department. In the over 200-page document there is a lot detail on not only money, but also demographics, unions