ACSU budgets hit hard by state aid calculation

MIDDLEBURY — The UD-3 school board will hold a special budget meeting this Tuesday, Jan. 12, to discuss new education funding information from the state that indicates the seven towns in the Addison Central Supervisory Union could be in store for even worse budget news than they had anticipated.
The UD-3 board last month agreed to present voters on Town Meeting Day with a proposed 2010-2011 spending plan of $15,967,209. The budget, which covers Middlebury Union middle and high schools, represents a 2.81-percent increase in spending and a potential hike of 5.9 percent in school property taxes.
But ACSU officials recently received preliminary information from the state suggesting that, based on current budget figures, Middlebury could see an increase of 9.57 percent in its K-12 homestead education property tax rate. The new information takes into account common level of appraisal factors and the state’s decision to boost the statewide education property tax rate by 2 cents.
Preliminary calculations showed that the other ACSU towns would see increases in the residential property tax rate of:
• 2.42 percent in Bridport.
• 4.9 percent in Cornwall.
• 5.13 percent in Ripton.
• 9.4 percent in Salisbury.
• 7.71 percent in Shoreham.
• 19.02 percent in Weybridge.
School officials decided to quickly call a special UD-3 meeting to learn more about the potentially bad budget news and determine whether there is any support for reducing the spending plan before it is finalized for the Town Meeting Day warning.
The UD-3 school board will meet at 6 p.m. in the Middlebury Union High School learning center.

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