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Upton’s Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Estimated at $19.3 Million

A new Fiscal Year 2015 budget will be presented to Upton residents during the town's May 8 Annual Town Meeting. At press time, Finance Committee members had yet to hold their Public Hearing on the budget. As a result, figures reported below could still change. However, according to the latest numbers, the town's estimated revenues, which include the 2 ½ percent allowable levy limit and state aid, among other things, is projected to total $19.3 million. Expenses, which include the town's operating costs projected at $18.3 million, plus other expenses and articles totaling $1.03 million, bring the Fiscal Year 2015 budget into balance.

Town departments reflect both increases and decreases to their overall budgets. The Board of Selectmen's budget for instance shows an overall increase of 10.18 percent from $1,105,549 to the recommended amount of $1,218,136 for Fiscal Year 2015. One of the largest increases is to the insurance line item which reflects nearly a $100,000 increase from $799,077 to $896,212.

The Fire Department's overall budget shows an overall increase of 20.91 percent from $614,050 to the recommended $742,425, or approximately $128,000. The largest increase being the Department's wages line item which rose from $485,070 to the recommended $606,845. The Police Department's budget shows a recommended overall increase of $31,151, from $1,558,397 to $1,589,548; the increase also for wages.

The draft budget also states Upton will increase its contributions to both Nipmuc Regional High School and Blackstone Valley Tech. Overall, Upton's contribution to BVT will increase 32.62 percent from $836,029 to $1,108,707, or $272,678. Part of the increase is due to a $2.9 million expansion plan that the vocational school is asking its 13 member towns to fund over 20 years. Upton is taking its portion of the funding, estimated to be approximately $21,000, out of the town's levy limit.

In total, the Mendon Upton Regional District's budget will have a $1.1 million increase. Upton's budget shows an overall contribution of $287,595 from $9,596,025 to $9,668,430. Along with increased contributions from both Mendon and Upton, the Regional District will be using $700,000 from its Excess and Deficiency Account and $125,000 from the Revolving Account to supplement the $1.1 million increase.

The Library's budget also shows a 4.89 percent increase from $217,604 to $228,251, or $10,647. The budget increases are for library materials and library network membership.

The Council on Aging's budget shows an overall slight decrease in its new budget of 1.92 percent from $179,201 to $175,766. Line items show decreases in electricity, trash removal, and transportation, other line items have increased including miscellaneous and office supplies.

The Emergency Medical Services Department shows an overall reduction of 26.55 percent or $213,539 to $156,836, or $56,703. The large decreases are the result of reductions in the wages and paramedic expense line items.

The May 8 Town Meeting will begin at 7 p.m. at Nipmuc Regional High School.


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