School Administrative Reorganization Law

This story was published on Feb. 27, 2008 on Page A2 in all editions of the Bangor Daily News

. Passed as part of the state’s biennial budget June 7, 2007, it requires Maine’s existing 290 school districts to reorganize into approximately 80 regional school units (RSUs). Expected savings: $36 million.

. Each RSU must consist of at least 2,500 students, unless excepted under provisions in the law for circumstances such as geography or population density. Those excepted must form RSUs of at least 1,200 students. Legislation is pending to allow RSUs of 1,000 students under special circumstances.

. Referendums must be held on the proposed reorganization plan in each municipality that will be part of the RSU. Initial referendums should be held June 10, 2008. If rejected by voters, subsequent referendums should be held Nov. 4, 2008. It is permissible to hold referendums between those dates or before June 10.

. New RSUs must be running by July 1, 2009. School districts that fail to be part of RSUs by this date will be subject to state financial penalty.