ORONO – Town councilors have set dates and times for a public hearing and a referendum vote on the plan to realign Glenburn, Orono and Veazie school departments into a regional school unit.
The council also approved during Monday’s meeting the language of the consolidation question as it will appear on the ballot.
There will be a public hearing at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 12. The vote will be held Monday, Jan. 27. Polling times are 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the council chamber of the municipal building.
The question residents will vote on ask whether they’re in favor of approving the plan prepared by the Riverside Reorganization Planning Committee to reorganize the school departments of Glenburn, Orono and Veazie into one regional school unit, effective July 1, 2009.
“I would like to emphasize for the public that this will be one more opportunity for the public to make themselves fully informed regarding the issue before the referendum,” said Orono Councilor Terri Hutchinson.
School Union 87, which is the current administrative entity for Orono and Veazie schools, also will hold public hearings on Thursday, Jan. 8, at the Orono council chamber; Wednesday, Jan. 14, at the Glenburn School gymnasium; and Thursday, Jan. 15, at the Veazie Community School. All three meetings will be held at 7 p.m.
Absentee ballots will be available before the public hearing date, Orono Town Manager Cathy Conlow said.
Susan Gendron, the state’s commissioner of education, has approved the latest revised regional plan, which was submitted Nov. 14.
The state has mandated that Maine schools reorganize into RSUs in an attempt to lower administrative costs.