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February 7, 2014

Voters reject attempt to slash Timberlane budget

Amendment would have cut $2.4 million.

(Continued)

Brenda Copp of Sandown said cutting the budget would provide a lift to her town’s taxpayers.

“We got hit very hard with taxes this year,” she said. “ I want everyone to consider us when it comes to this budget.”

The property tax rate went up more than 30 percent in Sandown this year.

Sandown residents represented the biggest contingent in attendance last night, with 278 voters. Overall, 633 registered voters turned out.

The meeting was delayed by 45 minutes as the line for voter check-in at the Sandown table wrapped around the auditorium. Several elementary school students were in attendance, holding signs saying, “We are the future” and “Do not cut the budget.”

Residents said they came out to vote because of concerns over potential budget cuts.

“I’ve got a child in high school and a child in middle school,” Laura Flieder of Atkinson said. “I’m concerned and I don’t have a right to complain if I don’t come out to vote.”

At the beginning of the meeting, Superintendent Earl Metzler, marveled at the number of people who turned out.

“This is what they’re talking about when they talk about the democratic process,” he said. “Thank you all for coming out tonight. The question is whether you’re all ready to get to work.”

After Green’s amendment failed, Atkinson resident Jack Sapia made a motion to add $750,000 for artificial turf on the football field. But the motion failed after no one else supported it.

Voters ended up sending the $66.4 million budget to the warrant as written. The default budget is $65.9 million.

Residents will have the final say on the budget at Town Meeting on March 11.

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