LINCOLN, Maine (NEWS CENTER) --- Town leaders will have to make a big decision next Monday night, as to whether they will pass a revised budget to make up for a massive shortfall.
Town officials say an audit last June showed there were errors in Lincoln's current budget for the fiscal year 2012-2013, which is in effect from last July through the end of next June. Essentially the town is collecting $1 million less in revenue than it needs to fund current town services.
Town officials blame the accounting error on the computer program used to prepare the budget. Councilors in Lincoln asked staff to find a way to fill the $1 million shortfall without raising property tax rates. Officials say they were able to do that by trimming town departments by about $70,000 each and putting off paving projects in the town until next year.
"Until we get this budget adopted, we can't send out tax bills," said William Lawrence, who is acting as Lincoln's interim town manager, "without tax bills going out we have no revenue going into the town so this is our next step is to get this new budget adopted."
A public hearing will proceed the council's vote on the budget next Monday night. At that hearing residents will have the chance to voice their concerns before town leaders make a decision. It will take place at 7 p.m. at the Lincoln town office.
Town officials say they will look at other ways to prepare the budget in the future to prevent this kind of problem from happening again.