PERU — Facing a tax increase for the 2019-20 fiscal year, voters Tuesday rejected buying a backhoe and a truck for the Highway Department and appropriating money for the Town Garage.

Select board Chairwoman Raquel Welch said along with an expected 8% increase in the RSU 56 assessment, taxpayers were facing a 9% increase in Oxford County’s assessment. She said the proposed $1.47 million municipal budget was “almost a carbon copy of last year.”

Among the nine articles rejected in the warrant were:

  • Whether to buy a used 10-wheeler with hydraulics, not to exceed $98,000, and to raise $36,000 for the first of three payments. It was voted down, 237-69.
  • Whether to finance a new Case 590 backhoe, not to exceed $130,000, and to raise $48,000 for the first of three payments. It lost 216-83.
  • Whether to appropriate $16,000 for the garage and maintenance. The vote against was 175-131.

The $13.7 million school budget was rejected 220-88 and the county budget was turned down by a vote of 175-129.

Welch was re-elected to a third term with 210 votes and Tammi Lyons for one year with 212 votes to finish the term of Kevin Taylor.

There were no candidates for the school board, but 15 names were submitted as write-ins.

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