Two new schools in Auburn at a cost of $100 million? I think not.
The Sun Journal reported that Portland’s Eastland Hotel is being remodeled, gutting all 12 stories, for less than $40 million. And back in 2011, it was reported in the Portland Press Herald that Falmouth built a new green school for 877 students for $37.7 million. The state funded 84 percent of that school ($31.7 million).
I supported giving all students a free breakfast, but $100 million for two schools does not make any sense after reading the two articles I have referenced above.
There is no question that Auburn's high school needs attention, but Auburn's property owners shouldn't be the sole source of funds. Doesn’t Auburn have some of the highest property taxes in Maine? With the potential loss of the homestead exception, I heard taxes could rise by as much as 14 percent. I did not get a 14 percent raise this year. I am already working 60 hours a week with two jobs to make ends meet when I should be looking at retirement.
I really do not have an answer, but shouldn’t Auburn officials look for the state to help with funding, as it did in Falmouth?
And no one wants to visit the joining of Lewiston and Auburn, but with the increased cost of running things, the unemployment rate and slow economy, maybe it is time for a joint school system and municipal services to relieve the property owners in both cities
Martin Keim, Auburn