DURHAM – The proposed $22.7 million budget for the Durham-Pownal-Freeport school system was defeated 582-661 at a referendum Thursday.
Although strongly favored by Freeport, the spending package was soundly defeated in Durham and Pownal, forcing the Board of Directors to develop another proposal and schedule more required votes. Under state law, the most recent budget adopted by the board will go into effect on July 1, the start of the fiscal year and the first day the newly consolidated Regional School Unit 5 begins operations.
The vote in each town was: Durham, 69-209; Pownal, 34-382 no; Freeport, 479-70.
A total of 278 votes were cast in Durham, 416 in Pownal, and 549 in Freeport.
The number of registered voters in each town is: 3,321 in Durham, 1,312 in Pownal, and 6,366 in Freeport.
The budget would have reflected a 7 percent increase for Durham taxpayers; just under a 1 percent decrease for Freeport and close to a 26 percent increase for Pownal.

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