WESTBROOK — Voters will be heading to the polls Tuesday, June 11 to vote on two items: whether they support the school budget and whether they want to continue voting for the budget through a referendum.
The $40.3 million fiscal year 2020 school budget was approved by the school committee May 10 and by the city council May 13. The local share of the budget – the amount funded through taxes – is $21.5 million, a $1 million or 5.2 percent increase over the current year. As it stands now the spending plan, if approved, would mean an additional $96 for homeowners with a $200,000 home. Upon the urging of Mayor Mike Sanphy, the city council approved a senior citizen tax assistance program in which homeowners and renters who are at least 70, have lived in the city for 10 years and who participate in the state’s property tax fairness credit program can get up to $500 off their tax bill.
Residents will also be asked if they want to continue approving the school budget through a validation vote for the next three years. If rejected, the final budget would be set by the city council. Last time the question came up, more than 80% of voters supported a validation vote.
Westbrook Community Center (Wards 1, 2, 3 and 4) and Prides Corner Congregational Church (Ward 5) will be open for voting between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. Absentee ballots are available at city hall or by calling 591-8116. Those ballots must be returned to city hall before polls close.