Preston budget referendum is Tuesday

Preston – Residents will go to the polls Tuesday to vote on the proposed $3.39 million town government and $11.6 million school budget, which will be separate questions on the ballot.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Town Hall. The Board of Finance will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday to discuss the outcome of the referendum. The board in May estimated that if the budgets are approved, the town would need a tax rate of 24.2 mills to fund the town, school, capital and debt service budgets.

The town budget includes funding for one resident state trooper, a reduction from the current two troopers. Residents spoke in favor of restoring funding to two troopers during a budget public hearing, but the Board of Finance retained the single position in light of the state requirement that towns pay an increased share of the trooper's cost.

The finance board did restore $80,000 to the proposed school budget to avoid key program cuts that would have eliminated extracurricular activities and the elementary school Spanish program.

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