The financial impact of the local and state shutdown will continue to snowball through the next six months, if not longer. Local municipalities are reviewing spending and incoming revenue to see what can be done to limit tax increases.

I applaud communities across the state that have gone back and reduced budgets and spending as sacrifices to protect homeowners’ personal finances with increased taxes.

I have participated in the RSU 16 Budget Committee and had been opposed to the increase even before the civil emergency and the stay-at-home order was implemented. Subsequent meetings from the school board and administration have been held and the town of Minot alone is looking at a yearly baseline increase of approximately $61 per $100,000 assessment. That is a significant increase for town residents and does not include what economic impact the shutdowns will further impose. There will be less revenue sharing and excise taxes available to our town and other towns, potentially driving up taxes.

I implore the team of RSU 16 to go back and reduce the budget. If it fails in July, it will put them at a huge disadvantage of having to go back and reduce it and then get it out to vote, which will push their ability to hire people and our tax commitment will be extended to set the mill rate and taxes for the ensuring year.

It is time to follow suit with other towns and reduce the budget.

Lisa Cesare, Minot

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