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Needham selectmen to vote on two tax hikes

Posted by Ralph Ranalli March 6, 2007 07:14 AM

NEEDHAM

Selectmen will vote tonight on whether to put two separate school tax hikes on the April ballot.

The School Committee has requested a $21 million property tax debt exclusion override to fund a permanent, three-story reconstruction of High Rock elementary to house the district’s sixth graders in 2009. This question also includes a $763,000 technology upgrade at Pollard.

A second question would ask voters for a $1.06 million property tax operating override to save nine middle and high school classroom teachers, one special education teaching assistant and an elementary art or physical education teacher. The override would add three elementary teachers needed to ease increasing enrollment in the youngest grades and a middle school physical education teacher cut from this year’s budget.

A debt exclusion raises taxes for the period it takes to pay for projects. An operating override permanently raises the amount of money a municipality can collect.

The School Committee agreed last week not to also seek a $1 million so-called “companion override,” which would seek future operating funds for High Rock when it opens.

The Selectmen’s meeting starts tonight at 7:30 at Town Hall.

-– Lauren K. Meade

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