About 40 voters approved Dresden’s $1,157,865 municipal budget, as recommended by the town’s budget review committee, and all other warrant articles during annual town meeting on Saturday, June 18.
The budget is an increase of $32,743, or 2.91%, from last year.
However, the budget will essentially remain flat because voters rejected a question that would have allocated $40,000 to begin the withdrawal process from RSU 2 during voting on Tuesday, June 14.
The $40,000 has been removed from the budget following the failure of the RSU 2 withdrawal question, Town Administrator Daniel Swain said during a phone interview on Wednesday, June 22. The question failed by a vote of 177-148, with 82 blank ballots
The updated total budget, as recommended by the budget review committee, is now $1,117,865, down slightly from last year.
The budget review committee’s total recommended budget is $350 more than the select board recommended on the annual town meeting warrant.
The budget review committee and select board differed on amounts to donate to different organizations. The select board recommended $20,675 for the donation request category, while the budget review committee recommended $21,025.
Residents approved the budget review committee’s recommendation in the higher amount.
Voters also approved changing the day of annual town meeting to the first Tuesday after the state primary election in June. No time has yet been set for the next annual town meeting.
There was some discussion on different warrant articles during the nearly three-hour meeting, according to Swain.
He said there were a lot of new people at annual town meeting who may not have been too familiar with the process and procedures. Most of the discussion involved explaining some routine warrant articles and technical questions.
Swain said he also made some changes to the warrant to “streamline the process” that most residents had never seen before, and that generated some questions.
Swain also reworked the budget slightly from last year, adding a new department for municipal buildings and debt services and moving capital reserve project funds from the general fund in the budget.
Jeff Pierce moderated the meeting.