BUCKFIELD – Selectmen at Tuesday night’s meeting approved sending voters information prepared by Town Manager Cindy Dunn on the Palesky tax-cap proposal.

The tax-cap referendum asks if voters want to limit property taxes to 1 percent of the assessed value of their property. According to the 2004 figures, if Maine voters approve the measure, the town would lose a total of $559,628.32 in property taxes. Most of the resulting budget cuts would come in municipal services. Road maintenance, fire, rescue, law enforcement, solid waste and recycling, animal control, recreation programs, the library and town office services currently provided to Buckfield residents would significantly diminish, according to the brochure.

The brochure says that if voters reject the tax cap, they will still have the right to say how much will be spent for municipal services through the local budget process and the town meeting form of government.

SAD 39 Superintendent Rick Colpits spoke to selectmen on the School Finance and Tax Reform Act of 2003. He said the statewide referendum that recently passed has the state funding 55 percent of education. However, he says, the advisory measure does not actually commit the state.

Gov. John Baldacci has chosen to implement the funding over five years. Colpits says he is worried, but will have to wait and see what the state is actually going to do.

SAD 39 cut its staff by four and a half positions this year to keep the school budget at a minimum.

“This would merely be a drop in the bucket if the Palesky tax cap passes,” Colpits said. But he added that he really doesn’t know what the complete cost impact would be. The Essential Central Program Services, which outlines what schools need to attain their learning goals, states that SAD 39 needs more money.

In other news, there will be a special town meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 20, in the Town Office meeting room at which voters will consider accepting Village Park land from Virgil Tilton and also an adjoining parcel from Mary and Shirley Jones.

The bid of $2,376 was accepted for the town’s 1989 Dodge one-ton truck. The 1986 GMC van will be put out to bid again with a minimum bid of $750, as the only other bid in was too low.

The resignation of Glen Holmes from the Public TV Committee and the Appeals Board was accepted, as he will become new town manager on Oct. 1. Brandon Holmes was appointed as replacement on the committee, and Pearly Lovejoy as replacement on the Budget Committee.


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