MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury residents this week passed all the money items on their town meeting warning, including their town budget, a slight raise for their selectboard members, and a proposal to re-establish a police canine program.
Residents at their annual gathering on Monday overwhelmingly passed, by voice vote, a 2017-2018 municipal budget of $10,321,456, of which $7,106,034 is be raised by taxes. The budget will result in a 0.42-cent decrease in the current municipal tax rate.
Residents also agreed by voice vote to spend $106,000 to replace two police cruisers and wood chipper for the Public Works Department.
In Australian budget voting on Tuesday, residents decided:
•  By a margin of 530 to 211, to raise selectboard members’ annual stipend from the current $1,500 to $1,800, along with a bump from $2,500 to $3,200 for the board chairperson. The raise was petitioned by a local resident, Ross Conrad.
•  Supported, by a tally of 476 to 256, a proposal for $30,620 to re-establish the town’s police canine program.
•  Agreed to add two new social service agencies to the list of agencies they give annual funding. They voted 637 to 114 in favor of Addison County Restorative Justice Services’ request for $2,500, and 626 to 127 in favor of the Addison County River Watch Collaborative’s request for $1,200.
There were no contested elections in Middlebury this year. Re-elected unopposed were incumbent selectboard members Brian Carpenter and Laura Asermily, to three-year terms; and incumbent ID-4 school board members Amy Graham, Victoria Jette and Lorraine Morse, to 10 month terms. Former Gov. James Douglas was returned to another year as town moderator, as was Jacqueline Sullivan for town treasurer. Newcomer Faith Gong won a three-year term as Ilsley Library trustee.
In a separate ballot, Middlebury residents Victoria Jette, James Malcolm and Mary Gill had no competition for at-large, three-year terms on the recently unified Addison Central School District (ACSD) board.
For the first time in many decades, Middlebury residents did not decide a local school budget on their town meeting day. They — along with other voters in the newly unified ACSD — instead fielded a K-12 budget for the entire seven-town district.
ACSD voters approved a 2017-2018 budget that calls for approximately $37.7 million in spending to cover the combined operating costs of all district schools. The budget reflects $30,428,802 in net, local education spending, which represents a 0.60-percent decrease compared to this year, according to ACSD officials.
Middlebury’s resulting homestead education property tax rate is projected to increase from the current $1.81 per $100 in property value to $1.84, according to the ACSD budget documents.

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