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April 07. 2014 5:26PM

Conway voting on tax cap today

CONWAY — Voters go to the polls today to consider contested races for selectmen, planning board, and school board as well as to decide whether the town and school district should operate under spending caps.

The polls open at 8 a.m. at the Conway Community Center and close at 7 p.m.

For selectmen, voters will choose from not more than two of the three candidates: David Weathers, Mary Carey Seavey and Kevin MacMillan, who is the lone non-incumbent.

For planning board, three candidates vying for two seats. The incumbents seeking reelection are Kevin Flanagan and Martha Tobin, while Steven Steiner is hoping to win his first term.

There are four candidates for three seats on the Conway school board with Michelle Capozzoli facing Rick Breton, John Skelton and Janine McLauchlan, all of whom are incumbents.

On the town ballot, voters will consider adopting a municipal operating budget of $10,189,547 but if the measure fails then the default budget would be $10,130,348.

Earlier this year, residents who were concerned about what they said was Conway’s spiraling tax rate introduced petitioned articles during the respective deliberative sessions on both the town and school warrants that would enact a “tax cap” to restrict how much the annual amount to be raised by taxes could rise.

Supporters of the tax-cap petitions wanted to control the increase to no more than 2.5 percent and the measure passed intact on the school warrant but was amended to 10 percent on the town warrant, prompting selectmen and the budget committee — which had been on opposing sides of the tax-cap question — to note on today’s ballot that they both did not recommend the amended article.

Both the school and town tax-cap articles require three-fifths of all votes to succeed.

On the school ballot, voters will consider an operating budget of $33,848,895, and if they fail to adopt it, the default budget would be $33,771,150. Voters will also weigh in on a new collective bargaining agreement between the school board and the Conway Education Association.

For the 2014-2015 fiscal year, the new CBA with the CEA would cost $365,125. The school board unanimously supports the article but the budget committee has voted 8-9 against it.

The school ballot also contains articles regarding new CBA’s with the Conway Educational Support Personnel totaling $119,577 and with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees which has a total cost of $59,671. Both of the CBA’s cover the current as well as the 2015-2016 fiscal years and both have the recommendations of the budget committee.

jkoziol@newstote.com


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