MEXICO — Voters Tuesday overwhemingly approved a $4.44 million municipal budget for fiscal year 2016-17, a $27,000 decrease from last year. 

Town Clerk Penny Duguay said voters approved all 19 articles.

Town Manager John Madigan said salaries are up 1.5 percent and insurances up 9 percent for an overall 3.76 percent increase in salaries and benefits. The insurance increase is mainly due to three employees moving from single to family coverage.

However, some of that increase has been offset by departments benefiting from lower fuel and heating costs. Under the Debt Service account, a reduction of $106,938 is reflected. Madigan said that’s because the town has now paid off the first $500,000 bond for roads.

The Fire Department budget will increase $8,742 to $286,651. Fire Chief Gary Wentzell said his budget includes:

• Some 1.5-inch hose;

• A dozen firefighter flashlights;

• A gas leak blower;

• A GPS for the rescue ATV;

• Velcro signs to detour traffic; and

• An additional $300 for the fire prevention education program.

The Police Department budget is up $20,220 to $441,621. Police Chief Roy Hodsdon said the $2,000 increase in the equipment account includes replacing obsolete Tasers.

In recreation, the budget is $116,829, $3,451 less than last year. Director Wayne Sevigny and selectmen discussed the possibility of money generated by recreation programs that go into the town’s general fund being allocated in the future back into an account for the Recreation Department for needed recreation park improvements.

The reserve accounts increased by $18,000 over last year to $170,890, including an additional $10,000 to assist the Recreation Department in their work at the park for the cooking materials in the new snack shack and a water line, and other items. The police equipment account has doubled to $10,000 as they will be buying a new cruiser in the near future.

Incumbents Reggie Arsenault and Byron Ouellette ran unopposed for three-year terms as selectmen. Likewise, incumbent Peter DeFilipp ran unopposed as a Mexico representative for three years on the Regional School Unit 10 board.

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