Nobleboro voters will head to town meeting Saturday, March 16, where they will discuss a municipal budget up 7.42 percent and an education budget up 2.37 percent.
According to Nobleboro Board of Selectmen Chair Dick Spear, the municipal budget stands at $927,422, an increase of $64,064 or 7.42 percent.
The budgets for the fire department and town office are up more than $20,000 each, while the figure also includes higher requests to support the Central Lincoln County Ambulance Service and Skidompha Library.
Spear said Article 17, for the operation of The Minnehata Fire Company, totals $89,990, up $21,532 from last year’s budget. The majority of this increase is for turnout gear.
Spear said another fire department-related cost relates to radio equipment.
Article 18 asks if residents will authorize the selectmen to borrow up to $45,000 for a two-year term to upgrade radio equipment.
The budget for town office administration is up $20,744 due to wages and insurance, according to Spear.
Spear said Article 39, the town’s contribution to the Central Lincoln County Ambulance Service, is up $10,834 from last year. The ambulance service is requesting increases from all member towns.
“They presented us their financials and showed their revenue was down and they needed this in order to survive,” Spear said.
“We didn’t like the increase, but the fact of it was, it is a necessary service for the town,” Spear said.
Regarding Skidompha Library, Spear said the Damariscotta-based library also had lower revenues than anticipated, typically generated through donations, and had come to the board with a request for $21,500.
Last year, residents approved $10,000 for the library.
After their budget meetings, the selectmen and the Nobleboro Budget Committee decided to recommend a $3,000 increase for a total appropriation of $13,000 to the library in this year’s budget.
The education budget totals $3,509,898.38, an increase of $81,311.97 or 2.37 percent from the previous year.
The biggest chunk of the budget, regular instruction, totals $1,845,971.73, an increase of $2,939.14 or 0.16 percent.
Special education instruction totals $585,303.02, an increase of $46,804.41 or 8.69 percent.
The increase includes funds for an additional educational technician to address emerging special education needs in the school’s youngest grades.
The transportation and buses portion of the budget is $251,063.10, an increase of $14,733.32 or 6.23 percent.
The increase is due to the correction of a contract error, as First Student Inc. forgot to charge the school for a portion of the transportation contract for two years.
The budget has a negative fund beginning balance of $52,929.83.
According to AOS 93 Assistant Superintendent of Schools for Business Rick Kusturin, “The overall impact is, essentially we have to pay more to support the budget, not necessarily because expenses are up, though they are, but because all the carry-forward has been used up in previous budgets.”