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Houlton Council approves $11.5 million budget

HOULTON, Maine — The Houlton Town Council unanimously approved an $11.5 million budget for 2022 during its regular meeting Jan. 3.

Projected municipal spending is down slightly for next year at $8,933,956 — a decrease of $18,846. 

Houlton Town Manager Marian Anderson previously said that the municipal budget would allow the town to keep its current mill rate of 22.6 for next year. The town plans to use $551,577 from its undesignated fund balance to help reduce the burden on taxpayers.

The spending plan allocates $437,290 for the Aroostook County tax and $2,159,161 for Houlton’s share of the RSU 29 school budget. Both of those figures could differ from the amounts allocated, which could affect the overall tax rate.

Across the board, non-unionized staff will receive a 2.5 percent cost-of living increase.

The town is setting aside $200,000 for its roads account to cover such things as new asphalt or repairs to existing roads. Last year, the town allocated $300,000 to that account.

One of the line items to previously draw discussion from the board was a request for $1,531 for LifeFlight of Maine. The council approved that request during the Jan. 3 meeting.

“I think it (the budget) tries to find a balance between the services the taxpayers demand and at the same time keeping the tax burden in check,” council chairman Chris Robinson said via email. “[It is] certainly not perfect, but overall I’m satisfied that the budget is fair.”

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