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LINCOLN â€“ Local voters will get the chance to offer their say on a proposed $76,138,712 town budget for 2013-14 when the Financial Town Meeting gets under way in Lincoln High School tonight beginning at 7 oâ€™clock.
Town Administrator T. Joseph Almond said Friday that he offered a budget similar to the Budget Boardâ€™s proposed figure before local voters and recommends passage of the town spending plan. He also pointed to the townâ€™s work over the past five years to lower municipal operating costs while limiting increases in local taxes as making the proposed budget potentially acceptable to taxpayers.
â€śIf the last three to four years are any indication, it should be uneventful,â€ť Almond said.
The budget represents an increase of $824,833 over last yearâ€™s budget, and would require a 1 percent increase in the townâ€™s tax levy to support it along with state aid.
The School Department would receive a total budget of $49,609,961 under the recommendation, which includes a $1,092,883 increase representing new state education aid in the coming year, according to Almond.
Although the recommendation notes a 1 percent increase in the tax levy, Almond said it is too soon to predict whether that change would carry through to an actual increase in the townâ€™s tax rate. The levy is still being worked out in revaluation and whether the increase will be covered by growth in the overall levy remains to seen, he said.
â€śThe assessed value of the town might increase enough so that we donâ€™t need to raise the tax rate,â€ť Almond said.
The budget includes $18,954,019 for municipal spending and also $1,146,254 in municipal capital spending. The capital budget would allot $130,000 to the lease purchase of a new rescue vehicle, $116,254 for lease purchase of a trash truck, $850,000 for road repairs and $50,000 for sidewalk improvements.
The Budget Boardâ€™s letter to the Financial Town Meeting estimates the budget, as prepared, could require a town tax rate on residential property of $22.85 per 1,000 valuation, a commercial rate of $26.12, a personal property tax rate of $35.88, and a motor vehicle tax rate of $30.66 per 1,000.
The budget also includes funding in total municipal capital expenditure resolutions of $2.4 million to complete improvements to the police station, local parks and dam rehabilitation under some multi-year improvement commitments.
School department capital improvements, including the repair of the Northern Elementary School, total $1.2 million under the proposed spending plan.
The session will be opened by Robert H. Turner, Jr., Town Moderator. Members of the Budget Board are Carl L. Brunetti, chair; Hagop S. Jawharjan, vice chair; Domenic A. Ricci, Michael P. Babbitt, William R. DiBiasio, Paul J. DiDomenico, Richard K. Foster, Rhonda K. Lacombe, Maria R. Marcello, and William J. McManus.