Sandown Selectmen Set Town’s Latest Tax Rate

By Alex Malm

Setting of the town tax rate was discussed at the Nov. 7 Sandown Selectmen meeting.
One of the things discussed was how much, if any, they should use from the fund balance towards offsetting the tax rate.
Town Administrator, Lynne Blaisdell, told the Selectmen previously the current fund balance is at 8% and the Department of Revenue Administration recommends that municipalities keep between 5 and 17% in case of issues that might emerge.
It was pointed out by Selectmen, Eric Olsen, that all the rates went down, except for the town, which went up slightly.
“The school rate went down, the state rate went down, and the county rate went down,” said Olsen.
Blaisdell told the Selectmen that the State Education tax rate went down $0.55, for a total of $1.52, and the Rooms and Meals Tax went up significantly compared to last year.
The tax rate for the town side of things came in at $5.48, for the County portion of the Tax Rate it came in at $0.98, and for the schools, the portion of the tax rate came in at $20.39.
Olsen and Selectmen, Robert Nickeron, said they wanted to keep the Fund Balance at 8%.
Olsen said they are happy with where the overall tax rate came in.
“We’re very pleased with the rate going down overall,” said Olsen.
Olsen added the rates don’t include the revaluation, which will be next year.
It was noted that the tax bills will be due by Dec. 15.
Olsen noted that everyone is in the same situation with the bills being due near Christmas.
“It stinks that it’s right before Christmas,” said Olsen.
The Selectmen ultimately approved the tax rate at $28.37, which is about $0.61 cents less than last year’s tax rate Olsen pointed out.
Also during the meeting, the Board of Selectmen discussed when they should hold the auction for different town owned properties that they are hoping to sell.
It was explained by Blaisdell that she spoke with the auctioneer who said they could have it in the winter time if they wanted to.
The Selectmen agreed to have the auction on the first available date for the auctioneer.
In other news, Selectmen, Darren Hudgins, said he started to raise money on Facebook for the Christmas lights on the roof of the town building. He said this year they are looking to add six corners to the building, which would cost about an additional $840 on top of the $1,700 they normally cost.
Hudgins said going forward the lights will likely cost about $2,100 per year.
At the time of the meeting, they had raised about $1,400 he said.

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