Lewiston Middle School students file out of the school last week at the end of the day. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

LEWISTON — Voters will decide on the proposed $82.9 million school budget Tuesday, May 8. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Longley Elementary School.

Voters will be asked if they approve of the budget and, in a nonbinding question, if the budget is too high, acceptable or too low.

Highlights of the spending plan include:

The amount. The $82.9 million proposal is up from $74.3 million, an 11.7 percent increase from 2017-18. The state is paying $61.54 million, including $3.3 million for the Robert V. Connors Elementary School under construction. The local share of the budget is $20.1 million.

Lewiston is receiving more education money from the state, but city taxpayers have to increase what it spends for local schools. If the minimum local contribution is not met, Lewiston will receive $3 less from the state for every $1 not spent locally.

One big factor in how much state funding districts receive is the number of students. Lewiston’s student population is 5,480 and is projected to be 5,641 next year.

Impact on taxpayers. For a homeowner with a property valued at $150,000, the annual increase would be about $81, not including the municipal and Androscoggin County assessments.

Reasons for higher budget. The biggest reason is Lewiston receives the most state money for education in Maine because of its economic status and high number of students. The extra money requires a minimum local share from taxpayers, a 5.3 percent increase. Another reason is 3 percent raises for school workers, or about $1 million. Health care costs are going up 4.5 percent, or about $1.2 million more.

Lewiston Middle School students file out of the school last week at the end of the day. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

Lewiston Middle School students file out of the school last week at the end of the day. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.