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Decision expected in Groton City road budget dispute

Published February 08. 2014 4:00AM   Updated February 08. 2014 11:39PM

Groton - Both the town and city await a decision from the group of three who met in mediation this week over a dispute stemming from the Town Council's decision not to fund the city's entire road maintenance budget request last year.

The city's road maintenance budget request was traditionally paid by the town, along with about 50 percent of the police budget, minus the chief's salary. But the Town Council last year opted to cut $243,370 from the city's $2.1 million request, not citing any specific purpose for the cuts.

By city charter, any dispute over road money that cannot be resolved by the two sides is decided by a group of three - one person appointed by the Town Council, one appointed by the City Council and one representative from the state Department of Transportation.

City Mayor Marian Galbraith said the group met Monday and she expects a decision in the coming week.

Meanwhile, the City Council this week approved the police and road maintenance portions of the city's 2014-15 budget. Galbraith said each represent about 2 percent drops from this year's spending. The proposed road maintenance budget for fiscal year 2015 is $2.12 million and the police budget is $4.6 million.

Galbraith said funding requests will not go to the town until the city knows how much money they will receive from state town-aid road grants. Any grant money will be subtracted from the total budget request to the town. Last year, the city requested $2.1 million of a road maintenance budget totaling $2.7 million.

- Greg Smith

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