This journey finds some answers this Monday night July 26th, the final Town Council vote on the budget. This is truly a time for leadership. The Schools are requesting a 2.51% increase, have stated clearly they could work with 1.5%. This is well within line of other Town departments; but, most importantly, this is only after difficult cuts to teachers, staff, and the Elmhurst School. The 1.5% increase will exceed the Maximum Levy Cap ("Tax Cap") and cost the average taxpayer about $8.33/mo. In an extraordinary year, a year the State has abandoned Portsmouth with cuts to State Aid, maintaining the foundation of our community: strong schools, safe streets, and trained first responders should be the Town Council's primary objective.
The Portsmouth Town Administrator has submitted all appropriate documentation to the State Municipal Affairs Department, and has the approvals to exceed the "Cap". So we have the right! Do we have the Leadership?
We pray that we avoid the signature campaign scheduled to begin this Thursday, avoid any further consideration of seeking Court assistance, and save the angst of our community.