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This week’s edition!

Lewiston’s tax rate going down

From City of Lewiston

Lewiston’s tax rate will be going down for the second year in a row, this time largely due to increased valuation from the Central Maine Power Clean Energy Connect Project.

The new net increase in valuation from the CMP project is approximately $100 million. The project’s contribution joins an additional $11 million valuation increase from new construction, building permits, four-year reviews, and the local Unitil adding $1 million to Lewiston’s tax base, for an overall 5.57% boost in tax valuation.

Finance Director Heather Hunter adds that “This increase in Lewiston’s valuation renders the largest increase in well over a decade. The FY22 tax rate previously published was $29.67 but will now fall by $1.41 to $28.26.”

Noting that Lewiston is a positive place for development and open for business, Mayor Mark Cayer said that Lewiston is a positive place for development, and open for business. “What wonderful news for the residents and businesses within the City of Lewiston! The fact that the new tax rate will be 41 cents below our current fiscal year $28.67 tax rate is so encouraging and certainly underscores that opportunity lives here!” he said.

 Cayer said that he and City Council members extend appreciation to Lewiston’s City Administration team, Finance Director Heather Hunter, and Chief Assessor Bill Healey and the Assessing team. “Their unwavering efforts to accurately capture tax valuation opportunities keeps our tax base current for annual tax rate evaluation.”

 School Committee Chair Megan Parks is also pleased with the tax rate decrease, “Education is a driving force in any community when it comes to community well-being and economic development. The entire Lewiston School Committee worked tirelessly to bring a budget forward this year that addressed our student needs but also took into account the pressures being placed on our property taxpayers. With this exciting news and the forecast of continued growth in Lewiston’s assessed value, we have an opportunity to provide the education our children deserve without dramatically impacting our property taxpayers.”

 Cayer said, “It’s a good day in any municipality when a tax rate decrease can be announced, and I am so pleased that Lewiston can deliver such news! Lewiston is moving in a positive direction, and the continued growth being witnessed will greatly benefit local taxpayers. Lewiston is indeed a growing city full of possibility; we’re affordable, accessible and the increased valuation is another example of the abundant offerings Lewiston has for people and businesses to thrive.”

 In contrast, Cayer said he is very concerned about currently proposed Maine legislation, LD 1708, which seeks to create a non-profit utility for those parts of Maine now served by Central Maine Power and Versant.

“We have storm clouds looming over our entire state in the form of LD 1708, and if passed, the legislation will dramatically—and negatively—impact every resident, taxpayer and business in this state,” he said.

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