School budgets throughout Clinton County were approved by voters during the annual vote held May 17. The breakdown for the North Countryman readership area is as follows:
The $38,721,107 annual budget proposed for the Beekmantown Central School District was narrowly approved by voters 746 to 730.
Superintendent Scott A. Amo said given the controversy over reductions in funding for various departments and employees, he wasn't surprised the vote was as close as it was.
"I think budgeting for many schools in New York state is suspect to the loss of state aid and revenue," said Amo. "I was expecting this to be a close vote but I am pleased the vote did pass. As I've said before, it presents a balance for quality programming that's sensitive to the local taxpayers."
Board of education member Leonard King was re-elected to a five-year term with 954 votes. Michael Hall received one write-in vote.
Voters also approved a proposition to purchase one 66-passenger bus and one seven-passenger vehicle by a vote of 219 to 13. The cost of the vehicles is not to exceed $134,000.
The Chazy Central Rural School District received approval for its $9,911,907 budget for the coming school year by a vote of 232 to 65. Voters also approved a proposition for the district to disburse $35,000 to the Chazy Public Library in annual support of its programming. The proposition was approved 192 to 90.
Rosemary Souza-Botten was approved to a five-tear term on the board of education with 192 votes. Mary LaPierre was approved for another by 216 votes. George Brendler was approved as a library trustee by 247 votes.
Superintendent John Fairchild said he and the board of education thank the community for supporting the budget.
"The vote clearly indicates the overwhelming support of the community for the school and the excellent educational program that is provided for the students of Chazy," said Fairchild, adding the pay freeze agreed to by the Chazy Teachers Association, administrators and other district employees helped "maintain all student programs and faculty positions."
"As a school community everyone shared some of the financial burden created by the fiscal crisis in New York state," said Fairchild. "Everyone believes that next year will bring additional fiscal challenges to all schools, but the Chazy school community is prepared to work as a team to handle these challenges."
The $18,266,725 budget proposed for the Northern Adirondack Central School District was approved by a vote of 409 to 78.
Superintendent Laura J. Marlow said she was pleased with the overwhelming outcome of the vote.
"Once again, the community has shown their support for public education in the Northern Adirondack Central School District," said Marlow. "We're very pleased with the outcome of the vote. We're a very close-knit school community that values not only education but all the extracurricular components as well."
Marlow added the fact the vote passed nearly 5:1 was impressive.
"That's almost unprecedented," said Marlow.
Paul Gilmore won a five-year term on the board of education with 213 votes. Incumbent Daniel Cayea trailed with 127 votes and Mark Decoste with 163 votes. An unexpired four-year term went to Sarah Lawrence with 320 votes. Scott Decker received 114 votes for the same position while Wayne Spahr received 45.
Voters also approved a proposition 374 to 76 to purchase three new buses for an amount not to exceed $311,466. Another proposition, to change the election of board of education members to an at-large system, was also approved. That vote passed 261 to 122.
The Northeastern Clinton Central School District will maintain a budget with no increase in taxes for third
year in a row. The $28,499,357 budget was approved by voters 332 to 114.
Superintendent Peter J. Turner thanked all community members who voted on the budget.
"The district will continue striving to provide a quality educational program for all students in a cost effective manner," said Turner.
Donna Boumil ran unopposed and was elected to a five-year term on the board of education with 337 votes. Orville Nedeau won a two-year unexpired term on the board with 201 votes. He was trailed by Bill Forkey with 148 votes and Steve Novacich with 95.
Propositions on the ballot included the purchase four new buses at a cost not to exceed $107,250 each, or a grand total of $429,000, which was approved 304 to 126.
A proposition to change the election of board of education members to an at large system was also approved by a margin of 279 to 133.
Saranac Central School District's proposed $31,455,381 budget was approved by voters 270 to 108.
"I think it's great particularly in light of a struggling economy," superintendent Kenneth O. Cringle said of the budget passing. "I was both relieved and pleased at the outcome of our vote. Certainly, we appreciate the support of our community at this time. We certainly can focus on expanding services for students and enhancing academic outcomes."
Charlene Favaro, who ran unopposed, won a five-year seat on the board of education with 276 votes. Propositions to set aside $317,400 for the district's bus reserve fund and a $6,000 appropriation for Dannemora Free Library were approved 292 to 91 and 262 to 118, respectively.