Explanation for Special Town Meeting Cancellation

posted Aug 20, 2018, 8:21 AM by Town Clerk   [ updated Aug 20, 2018, 8:22 AM ]

On Friday August 10th, 2018 the Budget Committee met to discuss the necessity of the proposed Special Town Meeting and how to go about reconciling the tax levy limit and the budget as approved at the June Town Meeting for the 2018-2019 fiscal year. In June the article to allow exceeding the tax levy limit was voted down.


Jim Murphy consulted the Maine State Economist, Maine Property Tax Revenue Services, the records of Somerville taxable value, personal growth, and levy limit percentages beginning from 2005, when the tax levy limit was established by LD1. The resulting calculation by Jim was a Somerville tax levy limit of $308,438.37 for the 2018-2019 fiscal year (FY2019).


Anticipated revenues include excise taxes, municipal fees, Maine State Revenue Sharing, MDOT, Veterans Exemptions, and Tree Growth. In the past the Town has not included RSU12 rent, nor plumbing and building permits and other smaller revenue areas as anticipated revenues estimates, even though they will contribute to those other revenues for the year. The amounts collected for property taxes are not included in anticipated revenues.


The actual FY2018 other revenue is $199,474 from just completed audit. That should be used as a conservative value for the anticipated revenues because other revenues have been increasing steadily year over year. Applying that anticipated revenue figure results in a net amount to be raised from property taxes of $275,408 for the municipal budget, which is $33,030 less than the tax levy limit. See the table of calculation results below.


FY2019 Appropriations


Article 27 (approp. from surplus for reduction of taxes)


FY2019 Anticipated Revenue (same as FY18 actual)


Net amount to be raised from property taxes


FY2019 Levy Limit


Amount property taxes are below the levy limit



Based on these calculations the Budget Committee concluded that no action is necessary for the taxes levied based on the appropriations in the FY2019 budget as approved by voters to comply with the allowed levy limit. It therefor recommended the Special Town Meeting previously scheduled for August 21st be canceled.


Note: The actual amount of property tax increase will depend not only on this municipal amount to be raised from property taxes, but also on county and RSU12 amounts, and current property valuations calculated when the tax commitment is prepared.