DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

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May 8, 2014

Derry residents could see tax rate drop

Councilors near end of budget work

(Continued)

Katsakiores said the money should remain in the budget.

“We charged the town administrator to give us a level-funded budget with no tax increase,” she said. “The money is already in the budget; I don’t know what the problem is. When the new town administrator is hired, the money is there.”

Cardon said he supports the position and economic development, but wants the new town administrator to be involved.

“We will do the supplemental appropriation to fund this later,” Cardon said.

But Fairbanks said zero funding the position sends the wrong message.

“We’re making a statement that we’re not funding economic development,” he said.

The council would have to hold a supplemental appropriation vote at a later date if the majority decides to fund the position.

Some residents weren’t happy with the council’s limited cuts.

“We need to cut a little bit deeper,” Marc Flattes said during a public hearing last week. “The fire overtime, cut more, $30,000.”

Janet Fairbanks said she was disappointed councilors didn’t do more.

“Are you proud of that?” she asked during the public hearing.

Embattled Taylor Library dodged another budget bullet. So far, councilors have included the library’s $187,189 budget.

Taylor Library trustee Candace Andrews said budget talks are not always about cost, but about the value of a service.

“And we have no unions, no overtime,” Andrews said. “It’s free for all who live and work and go to school in Derry.”

Others thought differently.

“It’s a redundant service,” Lynn Perkins said. “It needs to close down. It’s a small proportion of the population being served by it.”

Both police and fire departments also survived council challenges to their overtime costs during regular budget workshops.

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