In Epsom, the school district will receive $53,000 less by default 

  • Voters make their marks at the polls at Epsom Bible Church in Epsom on Tuesday. Melissa Curran / Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 3/10/2021 6:11:36 PM

Despite support from the Epsom School Board and Budget Committee, the district’s proposed operating budget of $12.28 million was rejected on Election Day, with voters preferring a default budget that was $53,000 less.

Official vote totals were not available by press time, but School Board Chair Michael Wiggett said the school budget was the lone article among three on the ballot to fail.

Passage of the operating budget would have meant a tax rate of $18.61 per $1,000 of assessed property value, which would have resulted in a $3.22 increase over the previous year.

The other two articles, Wiggetts said, included approval of $40,000 for a Special Education Trust Fund previously established, with the money to be transferred to an unassigned fund on July 1.

Another $40,000 will be deposited into the Building Maintenance and Repair Trust Fund, also scheduled for transfer on July 1.

In a three-person race for two School Board slots, Wiggett and Michael Muise finished ahead of Graeme Crowther, Wiggett said.

The town election featured a hotly contested race, with incumbent road agent Scott Elliott defeating former road agent Gordon Ellis by a 488-225 margin.

Results from the write-in votes for cemetery trustee will be announced once the candidates have been alerted of the final vote.

The town also posted that all 16 town warrant articles had passed, and Wiggett said those results would be released on Thursday. Town clerk Laura Scearbo was not available for comment.

The town passed its proposed operating budget of 3.56 million; the default budget would have been $3.53 million, the same as last year. The tax rate will be $3.83, 12 cents less than last year.

Most of the articles sought to raise money and make deposits into a series of capital reserve funds.

The fire department items passed as well, as voters approved $125,000 to buy a forestry truck, $25,600 to purchase a heart monitor/defibrillator, and $17,000 for a portable ventilator.

Ray Duckler bio photo

Ray Duckler, our intrepid columnist, focuses on the Suncook Valley. He floats from topic to topic, searching for the humor or sadness or humanity in each subject. A native New Yorker, he loves the Yankees and Giants. The Red Sox and Patriots? Not so much.

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