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Deer Isle, Isle au Haut and Stonington, Maine.
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by Anne Berleant
Voters face a municipal budget down $22,500 and a school budget with a minimal rise of $4,447 at town meeting on Monday, March 25.
The only land use issue is Article 60, which asks voters to reverse their decision from last year, which increased the minimum lot size from 0.7 acres to 1 acre in the Accessible Shoreland Area, but went against state statute.
“Evidently, you’re not allowed to do that,” said Second Selectman Dan MacDonald.
Other than that, it’s business as usual, said selectmen.
“Everything’s pretty much the same as last year,” said MacDonald. “We tried to keep stuff as low as we could.”
The $215,004 municipal budget is down about 9.5 percent from last year, but that could change. Last year, voters approved two requests from the floor—$35,000 for roadwork and $25,000 for the island store.
“There was some discussion about [the store appropriation] last year,” said First Selectman Landon DeWitt. “I think a lot of people are willing to help out as long as they’re sure its being managed properly. It went right through last year.”
This year, a $30,000 appropriation for the store is included as Article 53, but articles appropriating funds for town roads and bridges and the fire department will be sorted out on the floor—selectmen included no specific recommendations.
The request for Isle Boat Services is identical to last year’s $45,000.
Also on the warrant is a request to raise $15,000 for Revere Memorial Hall, a $10,000 increase from last year. That $5,000 was augmented by another $5,000 transferred from interest funds. The request for Colwell Ramp is down $1,000 from last year to $5,000.
The 2013-14 school budget of $194,459 is substantially unchanged from this year, with costs holding steady across the board except for a $4,700 increase for special education.
After choosing a moderator, voters will elect town officials. Open positions include three selectmen seats, which run for one-year terms, one three-year school board seat, a one-year seat on the Colwell Ramp Committee to be filled by a selectman and a two-year seat to be filled by a community member, and one-year terms for tax collector, town clerk, treasurer, two tax assessors, road commissioner and fire chief.
“As far as I know, it’s pretty much going to be a usual town meeting like we always have,” said DeWitt.
The meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. Those attending from the mainland should catch the 7 a.m. mail boat from the Stonington dock. The return boat leaves the Isle au Haut dock at 4 p.m.