Since the state hasn’t adopted a budget yet, it is unclear how much state aid will go to Groton.
“If the governor’s budget was passed we’d be in very big trouble,” said Groton Mayor Bruce Flax. “It would be devastating for us.”
The town took an initial hit when the state decided to determine Education Cost Sharing funding based on students enrolled in the Husky Plan. Many of the students in Groton are military and don’t use that state insurance.
“So it didn’t count those students in the formula and it shorted us,” said Mayor Flax.
The town lost 9 million dollars in education funding.
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It hopes some will be restored and has based its budget on an estimated $5 million loss, which would require an increase in the tax rate from 21.73 mills to 23.63 mills. For each $100,000 in assessed property value, taxpayers would pay an additional $190 in taxes.
“We try to economically survive as we can so this is gonna be a big blow,” said Grace Cirino who lives in the Mystic village of Groton.
The school department has also made major cuts to help cut costs including closing an elementary school while the town has put the brakes on several public works projects. Some are worried the cuts made won’t be enough if the state chops state aid by more than $5 million.
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The Town Council will vote on the proposed tax increase Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall Annex on Groton Long Point Road.