Norway voters to consider $4.8 million budget for fiscal 2018

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By Matthew Daigle

NORWAY — Residents will vote on a $4.8 million budget at their annual town meeting on Monday, June 19.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at the Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School Forum, where residents will consider the 39-article warrant.

The recommended budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year is an increase of $113,476 over the previous year.

An article near the end of the warrant asks residents if they wish to deduct the town’s anticipated revenues – listed on the warrant as $1,494,690 – for the purpose of reducing the tax levy.

The biggest budget increases came in the town’s Administration and Police Department budgets.

Residents will vote on whether to appropriate $507,277 for administration, an increase of $36,212 over the previous year’s budget.

As for the Police Department budget, residents will vote on whether to appropriate $809,360, an increase of $84,455 over the previous year.

Both articles were recommended by the Board of Selectmen and the Budget Committee.

Town Manager David Holt said that a big reason for the increases in both departments is “health insurance.”

The Norway Police Department’s proposed health insurance budget jumped from $95,631 to $146,286, while the health insurance for the town’s administration increased from $75,461 to $96,571.

Holt said that the cost of the town’s insurance “increased about 13 percent,” which contributed to a portion of the increase.

The rest of the increase was due to Norway being responsible for paying 60 percent of the cost of adding spouses and children to their insurance plan.

“Some [employees] added eligible family members as their family circumstances changed, whether it was marriage, births, or spouses losing coverage at work,” Holt said.

mdaigle@sunmediagroup.net