The up-Island regional school district may need to amend its budget after voters in West Tisbury rejected the town’s first tax override in 10 years this week. Voters easily defeated a question on the annual ballot Thursday asking for an additional $300,000 in property tax assessments to fund a portion of the school budget. The vote was 206-146 with 384 voters casting ballots in a quiet election year.

District committee chairman Michael Marcus said Friday he was disappointed by the outcome. “Voter turnout was extremely low and that was also very disappointing,” he said.

At the annual town meeting Tuesday, voters approved the $16.9 million annual town budget, including $7 million for the school district. Mr. Marcus amended the figure on the town meeting floor to include a $68,440 reduction. He also apologized to the finance committee for not offering more details during the budget hearing process this winter.

The town finance committee had voted not to recommend the overall town budget, singling out increases in school spending as a key reason, along with retirement benefit obligations and other factors.

“I think the fincom did a great job, and we didn’t do as good of a job,” Mr. Marcus said Friday. “So we’ve got some work to do.”

The school committee plans to meet May 4 to clarify its options. But West Tisbury officials noted Friday that the school budget involves all three district towns and two have not yet voted on their portion of the up-Island school budget in its current form. Chilmark’s annual town meeting is April 27 and Aquinnah’s is May 12. And the West Tisbury town meeting has not adjourned yet; the meeting was continued to a second night on Wednesday this week but failed to get a quorum, and will reconvene April 28.

Selectman Cynthia Mitchell said Friday that the regional school agreement was “not explicitly clear” on what should happen next. She said she hoped the May 4 meeting of the school committee would be instructive. Regardless of the outcome, she believed a new school budget would require a special town meeting. “We need some clarification,” Mrs. Mitchell said. “But it seems like that’s probably true.”

West Tisbury’s town meeting remains in session but the warrant has already been published, so new articles cannot be added to the agenda. Special town meetings in Massachusetts require advance notice of 14 days.

Mrs. Mitchell said she does not believe the school district committee could simply increase the assessments for Chilmark or Aquinnah to make up for the failed override. Each town’s assessment is based on a “fairly technical mathematical computation,” she said. West Tisbury is the largest of the three towns and is responsible for about 68 per cent of the school budget this year.