Selectmen make cuts, ask for caution in spending

Southborough municipal employees won’t be going to Office Depot anytime soon. At a special meeting last night, Board of Selectmen Chairman Bill Boland told town department heads not to spend money unless absolutely necessary. And that includes everything from overtime and travel to pens and stationery.

Overruns expected this year
Boland said he expects the budget for the current year will run over. Deficit spending of $88K has already been approved for snow and ice removal, and the town expects to exceed its heating oil budget by an estimated $17K.

And then there are the likely cuts to local aid. Governor Deval Patrick is expected to release numbers later today, but the town anticipates a $50K cut in aid for the current year.

“We’re in much better shape than a lot of our neighbors, but it’s not all nice and rosy at this point,” Boland said.

To offset some of the overages, the town hopes to see some savings in insurance costs. They have also decided to not to fill an open position at the DPW.

Cuts for fiscal year 2010
As for the next fiscal year, Selectmen have recommended $1.6M in cuts, but are still over budget by $129K. “Expect more cuts,” Boland told the group.

Boland brought up the Advisory Committee’s request for a no-tax-increase budget in addition to the normal level-services budget. “You’re going to have to be prepared if budgets get cut further. I don’t know if town meeting voters will stomach any kind of tax increase,” Boland said.

The town is still waiting to hear how much local aid they will get for the upcoming fiscal year.

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