Override would add $322 to average single-family tax bill

Town Administrator Thatcher Kezer unveiled for the first time on Wednesday the implications of the proposed $2.47 million override on residents’ tax bills — with the average single-family facing an increase of $322.10.

The median single-family tax bill will rise by $252.38, Kezer said.

He confirmed the news during the Council on Aging’s speaker series Wednesday afternoon, during which he and Town Moderator Jack Attridge discussed Town Meeting and answered residents’ questions. Kezer and other town officials have emphasized that the override — a permanent increase to the town’s tax base — is necessary to plug a structural deficit in the fiscal year 2024 budget.

Kezer had previously declined to answer questions about the impact of the override on residents’ tax bills, but confirmed the numbers would be unveiled before Town Meeting on May 1.

The figures Kezer unveiled Wednesday represent an estimate, as he pointed to “other factors, such as the change in home values” that determine the impact of the override on the average household.

The override, which earned a positive recommendation from the Finance Committee last week, will go before Town Meeting on May 1 as Article 31 — “Supplemental Appropriation and Expenses of Several Departments.”

Kezer said the override number represents the difference between a balanced, reduced budget and a level services budget, in which no cuts are made. Of the $2.47 million, $1.33 million would go toward town departments, while the remaining $1.14 million would go to the school department, from which 33 positions will be axed if the override doesn’t pass.