By Kim Siebert MacPhail
Finance Director Victor Garofalo reported that the Finance Committee (FinCom) set FY14 operating budget guidelines for Town departments at an increase of 2.15% over FY13 during their meeting on December 13. Town Manager Rick Reed reiterated this number on Monday night at the Selectmen’s meeting, saying that departments will now begin to construct their budgets, knowing the parameters they should work within.
“We’ll be working over the next few weeks with staff to develop the budget. I probably will have a sense of the Selectmen’s budgets for the meeting agenda for January 14,”Reed said.
Historically, many Town departments have been able work within the budget guidelines set by the Finance Committee. Sometimes, however, circumstances—including employment contracts, mandates, one-time program costs or state aid based on the level of Town funding— can prompt a recalculation. Before the March Annual Town Meeting, each department will meet with FinCom for individual budget discussions.