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The Town of Portland's chief executive official is the First Selectman. The First Selectman is elected by the people every two years in odd numbered years, along with the six-member Board of Selectmen, which is responsible for fiscal management. Town meetings are held to decide special issues. In accordance with the Portland Town Charter the Annual Town Budget Meeting is held on the first Monday in the month of May and the presented budget is then submitted to the voters at a Budget Referendum to be held the following Monday from the meeting.

The original Charter of the Town of Portland was approved in 1982 and implemented in 1983. It was amended in 1993, 1995, 1997, 2000, and 2004.

Property tax is the primary source of revenue.

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