Town may seek to hike local taxes

Pembroke voters may be asked to raise taxes next year to help fund town services and potential building projects.

Town Administrator Edwin Thorne said that due to the growth of the town and the corresponding rise in demand for town services, Pembroke may need to consider a Proposition 2 ½ override for fiscal 2019.

An override -- a permanent increase in the town’s property tax cap to fund operating expenses -- has come before Pembroke voters only once before, a $1.3 million measure approved in 2015, according to Thorne.


“We are getting to the point where we have to bite the bullet on the town side,” he said, referring to the funding of non-school departments.

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Thorne said that for the first time since he became town administrator in 1998, he plans to prepare two budgets -- one that assumes an override and one that does not.

Separate from the operational override, Thorne said the town may need to ask voters to adopt one or more debt exclusions -- temporary tax increases to repay debt -- to pay for some of the municipal buildings projects now under discussion in town.

Pembroke has passed three previous debt exclusions: one in 2002 to fund projects associated with its withdrawal from the Silver Lake Regional School District, another in 2014 for school roof repairs, and the third in 2015 to pay for Department of Public Works equipment.

John Laidler can be reached at