Gorham council approves town, school budgets

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GORHAM — The Town Council Tuesday unanimously approved a $57.7 million overall budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 that includes municipal spending, Cumberland County tax assessed the town, and the Gorham school budget.

The $41 million school expenditure plan, up more than $2 million from $38.9 million, or 5.3%, passed as requested. It will go to voters in a validation referendum on Tuesday, June 11.

Town Council Chairman Benjamin Hartwell on Wednesday expected that voters would approve the school budget. “I’d be surprised if it doesn’t pass, it always does,” Hartwell said.

Money to operate the town was capped at $15.4 million, up about $625,987 or about 4.2% from the current $14.7 million. The county tax is $1.2 million, up $68,750 representing a 5.9% hike.

Town Finance Director Sharon Laflamme said following Tuesday’s meeting that the school budget raises the town tax rate 74 cents per $1,000 of property valuation; town spending, 4 cents; and the county tax, 3 cents. Laflamme said Gorham’s estimated tax rate would be $19, up from the current $18.20.

Property taxes on a home with an assessed value of $300,000 will rise about $240.

Robert Lowell can be reached at 780-9089 or [email protected]