2,614 Oyster River school district ballots were cast. This is a pretty large turnout, almost certainly due to the field question (2,529 votes cast). In recent years it is only surpassed by the 3,000 ballots cast in 2012, in reaction to the tweet and Right-to-Know scandals.
Article 1: Moderator
Richard Laughton 2026 votes 100% ELECTED
Article 2: School Board Members, Town Seats
Lee Maria Barth 1836 100% ELECTED
Durham Al Howland 1903 100% ELECTED
Madbury Dan Klein 1741 100% ELECTED
Article 3: $2M Field, $1.7M Bond (60% needed to pass) FAILED
YES 1382 54.6%
NO 1147 45.4%
That was pretty close. If 136 NOs switched to YES the field would have passed. Alternatively if 226 NOs had stayed home or 339 more YESes had shown up, the field would have passed. I've seen some other reports of these numbers and none of them have been correct.
Article 4: Bus Drivers Contract ($69K raise) PASSED
YES 1808 71.9%
NO 705 28.1%
Article 5: ORPaSS Contract (Paras and Support Staff, $136K raise) PASSED
YES 1684 67.8%
NO 800 32.2%
Article 6: Benefit Stabilization Fund ($200K) PASSED
YES 1462 60.0%
NO 975 40.0%
Article 7: Main Budget ($40.8M) PASSED
YES 1484 60.8%
NO 955 39.1%
Adding it all up, I get a back of the envelope total appropriation of a record 40.759+.2+.136+.069 = $41.164 million. It would have been $43.2M had the field passed. Last year's figure is .320+39.326=$39.646M, so we have an increase of 41.164/39.646 = 3.8%. That's not really that close to the nominal 3% cap articulated in this year's budget goal. The board has however met their goal, because they exempt the warrant articles they recommend, so their calculation is more like 40.759/39.646 = 2.8%. Many of the appropriations exempted from the numerator one year, where they would have made the calculated increases larger, are counted in the denominator the next year, where they makes the calculated increase smaller. I don't like it one bit. I think the time is ripe for a serious discussion about budget goals.
By the way, tuition revenue is expected up a bit ($200K if I recall, .5%) so the amount we get from the state, fed, & local grants and taxes needs to go up around 3.3%. In the case where the state and federal sources don't rise as fast as 3.3%, we'd have to make it up by our local property tax rising more than 3.3%. In an extreme case (or the marginal case) if the state+fed portion didn't increase at all, all the increase would have to come from the 2/3rds of the revenue that is local property tax, so local property tax would have to increase by 3.3/(2/3)= 5%. This year, according to the MS-26 form the district filed, it appears that local school property tax is increasing by 3.3% so those other revenue sources must be keeping up.
Now that people are largely done reading this post, I can leave a math note for myself, about supermajority votes like article 3.
p is the fraction of YES votes need to win (p = .6 here)
y is the number of YES votes cast
n is the number of NO votes cast
a is the number of additional votes to change the outcome
Sy is the YES switch -- 1 if we add the a additional votes to YES, else 0
Sn is the NO switch -- 1 if we subtract the a additional votes from NO, else 0
Then a >= [ p n - (1-p) y ] / [ p Sn + (1-p) Sy ]
Defining v = p n - (1-p) y, we get
v votes to switch (Sy = 1, Sn = 1)
v / p fewer NO votes (Sy = 0, Sn = 1)
v / (1 - p) additional YES votes (Sy = 1, Sn = 0)
Remember to round up at the end (but don't round v before the divisions).
The v definition gives a good way to think about it : NO votes are worth p, YES votes, 1-p. If we normalize YES votes have a worth Wy = 1, NO votes are worth Wn = p / (1-p). Wn indicates just how much power the supermajority requirement gives to the minority. For p = .5 (a simple majority), Wn = 1, no advantage to the majority. For p = .6, Wn = .6/.4 = 1.5, so NO votes are worth 50% more than YES votes, a pretty powerful advantage to the minority. For p = 2/3 (e.g. a veto override), Wn = (2/3) / (1/3) = 2, so NO votes are worth twice YES votes, an extreme advantage to the minority. Solving gives p = Wn / ( Wn + 1 ).
One last note. For a simple majority (p = .5), to win y / (y + n) > .5, but for supermajority (p > .5), the inequality is relaxed so y / (y + n) >= p wins.