The Lisbon town council during the annual budget meeting Tuesday.  Screenshot.

The Lisbon Town Council adopted an $9.1 million municipal budget for the fiscal year starting July 1 — a $247,616 or 2.7% increase over last year’s spending.

Homeowners will see a 67-cent or 2.9% decrease in their property taxes, bringing the tax rate down from $23.10 to $22.43 per $1,000 of assessed property value. This means a property tax bill for a $200,000 home would decrease by $134.

The version of the budget passed Tuesday is less than the spending plan originally proposed in March, which would have raised taxes by 7.1%.

“The major difference between the proposed budget in March and the updated budget is that we took out a lot of capital expenditure that we originally had in the budget,” Town Manager Diane Barnes said. “We will fund those through unassigned fund balance.”

Most of these are one-time expenses so they would not have any impact on the future budgets, said Barnes. “The major increase of $247,616 in this year’s budget is to add [a] mechanics position in the public works department, a half-time position in the [recreation] department and a police officer’s position which were previously deferred due to COVID-19.”

The town also added two new positions this year — one police officer and one firefighter.

Earlier this month, the council approved $18.1 million school budget, which represents a $448,345 increase over the previous year’s budget. Taxpayers will contribute about $7.79 million to the school budget, adding 36 cents to the tax rate.

The budget also includes a general fund revenue of $4,290,271, which is an increase of $897,412 or 26.5% from the previous year.

The major increases in this year’s budget are the revenue sharing and excise taxes, which have been raised by roughly $300,000. Moreover, the sewer fund revenue is $1,442, 072, representing an increase of $77,417 or 5.7% from the previous year.

Barns said the town’s unassigned fund balance sits at $3,195,275, as of June 2020. “We added to that approximately a $180,000 in overlay and $33,000 that we received in training expenses,” said Barnes.

“We are reducing it to 12% threshold as per the unassigned fund balance policy, which will allow the town to spend $1,179,750 to cover the capital expenses and it still leaves us with $40,973 to reallocate later if we need to.”


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