$551K OK'd for 'Gansett schools; Fifth time's a charm for Templeton vote.

AuthorOwen, Paula J.

Byline: Paula J. Owen

TEMPLETON -- After Narragansett Regional School District funding was shot down four times previously by voters in Templeton, voters from both towns in the district Thursday night approved $551,000 in additional school money from Templeton that officials say will have to come out of the town's operating budget.

Around 432 voters from Templeton and 125 voters from Phillipston attended the joint town meeting, packing the Narragansett Regional High School auditorium and slightly overflowing into the school's gymnasium.

A simple majority vote was needed to approve the money. Templeton pays about 80 percent of the towns' school assessments based on enrollment, and Phillipston around 20 percent, officials said.

Phillipston approved its portion of the increased school budget at its annual town meeting in May.

At the joint town meeting, after two requests for a paper ballot vote failed, voters by a show of hands approved $6.52 million in assessments for both towns -- about $111,000 less than previously certified by the School Committee because of an increase in state aid to the district.

Though the amount was lower, the $551,000 represents nearly a quarter of Templeton's overall town operating budget of $4.5 million.

Templeton voters rejected the measure twice at special town meetings and twice at Proposition 21/2 override elections, and the district has been operating on a 1/12 budget, meaning month by month based on last year's spending.

The School Committee scheduled the joint town meeting to push for the additional money from Templeton.

After the vote, Templeton officials said that the town will need to hold another special town meeting to figure out what the next step will be: to cut services, or hold...

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