LENOX — Because of hot weather and possible showers, Tuesday afternoon's annual town meeting has been relocated from the soccer field at Lenox Memorial Middle and High School to the air-conditioned Duffin Theater inside the school.
The meeting, with 22 articles on the warrant, begins at 5 p.m.
Voters will be asked to approve moderate increases in the municipal and School Department budgets for the fiscal year starting July 1. The preliminary estimated tax increase for homeowners is expected to average about 2.5 percent.
Funding for multiple capital investment projects, mostly for design and engineering, will require borrowing at current low interest rates, if voters approve. The projects include a proposed public safety complex, a federally mandated wastewater treatment plan upgrade, and repairs to the town library and to Town Hall.
The budgets prepared by Chief Administrative Officer Christopher Ketchen and by the School Department have been approved by the Select Board and the advisory Finance Committee. Education spending won only a 4-3 endorsement from the Finance Committee.
Also on the warrant is a revised agricultural zoning law allowing raising and keeping chickens for personal use on residential properties of less than five acres, and the proposed purchase by The Mount from the towns of Lee and Lenox of a Laurel Lake shorefront farmhouse, part of the original Edith Wharton estate.
Town meeting voters in Lee already approved the agreement to transfer the parcel of just under 1.4 acres, with the two towns retaining most of the shorefront within the public park.
The town's proposed operating budget of $25,674,755 is up 4 percent, including $14,390,000 in school spending, a 3 percent increase.