Last night, Newton Mayor Setti Warren unveiled a $11.4 million tax override proposal that would help cover costs for new school buildings, roads, police staff, public safety equipment and a renovated fire station.
The proposal asks the Board of Aldermen to approve a March 12, 2013 special election for residents to consider three separate tax override questions.
The first question asks for an $8.4 million operational override that would cover a number of different capital needs including funding for projects in the schools, public works, police and fire departments.
The second question would ask for approval of a debt exclusion override to cover the cost of rebuilding the 90-year-old Angier Elementary. The third question would ask for a similar debt exclusion override to cover the cost of renovating or rebuilding the 80-year-old Cabot Elementary.
If all three overrides pass, the average Newton tax bill will increase by approximately 50 cents for every $1,000 valuation of a home, according to Chief Financial Officer Maureen Lemieux. This amounts to an average of $343 per year, based on Newton's median home price of $686,000.
Following last night's announcement, the city launched an override calculator that helps residents find out how much their taxes will increase if the proposed override passes.
The last time the city attempted to pass an override was under Mayor David Cohen, who proposed a $12 million operational override in 2008. The city voted the proposal down.
Dan Fahey, a Newton resident who led the opposition against the city's last attempt at an override, told Newton Patch Monday night that he believes the current administration has managed the city's financials well and that the override proposal is a "logical, well-thought out plan."
TELL US: What do you think of the override? Are you in favor of the proposal? Would you vote for all three override questions -- or just one? Sound off in the comments section below.