LISBON – Voters turned down a proposed school budget Tuesday by a vote of 231-190.

Only 421 residents, 6 percent of the town’s 6,886 registered voters, turned out for the school budget validation referendum.

In the second ballot question, which asked why they voted against the referendum, 232 said it was too high and 11 said it was too low.

The $14.33 million budget, after revenues, would have required $5.11 million in local taxes, and reflected no increase in the tax rate.

Cuts made during budget deliberations would have funded a six-room addition at Lisbon High School to replace the current modular unit and address other accreditation issues.

As for what happens next with the new fiscal year beginning July 1, School Committee Chairman Prudence Grant said Tuesday night, “I guess we’ll just have to reconnoiter.”

She said she thought state law required the budget approved by the council to be implemented until the School Committee comes up with a new budget. That budget would then have to be presented to voters in another referendum election. The school board had already scheduled a special meeting for next week to discuss other business, Grant said, and she expects they will be looking at what their next step will be.


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