A case for different figures

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This is in response to Bernice Fraser’s letter (May 2) and an article published in the Sun Journal March 8. I am a taxpayer in Regional School Unit 16 and chairwoman of the RSU 16 Budget Committee.

Fraser, of Minot, wrote that the school is asking for a $1 million increase from last year. That is untrue. The actual increase approved by the School Committee and to be voted on May 11 is $530,000. That follows several years of no increase from the School Department and a budget that is actually less than it was three years ago; $19.7 million then and $18.1 million now.

The March 8 story quoted Mechanic Falls Town Manager John Hawley as saying that an entry-level custodian in the RSU would be starting at $12 per hour. Again, untrue. That position actually starts at $10 per hour.

It is very frustrating to have so many untruths stated about the actual budget. The economy is difficult enough to deal with without people relaying untruths.

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I encourage residents to attend the hearing on May 11 at the Minot Consolidated School to hear the truth concerning the budget.

We are striving to provide the best educational experience for our children and had to struggle with less state subsidy and the loss of federal stimulus money. I believe this budget is a responsible way to continue to meet the best interests of all the children and still be fair to taxpayers.

Terri Arsenault, Mechanic Falls

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