A Big Win for East End School Budgets

School Vote
School budgets passed easily on the East End yesterday.

All school budgets across the East End passed last night, some by wide margins.

Of note: In Riverhead, Susan Koukounas and Ann Cotten-Degrasse kept their school board seats and three ballot propositions also passed: to build a new bus garage in Calverton, install a turf field at the high school and establish a capital reserve fund.

In Amagansett, board member Mary Lownes was ousted by Steven Graboski. In East Hampton, Christina DeSanti, John Ryan Sr. and Elizabeth Pucci won the school board elections. Christopher Hudson beat out Carolyn Terry in East Quogue. Elizabeth Scully and Michael Dunn won Hampton Bays’ election. Diane Hausman held on to her seat in Montauk.

Thomas Schiavoni, Chris Tice and Stephanie Bitis won Sag Harbor’s election. Roberta Hunter and Donald King won Southampton’s election. Suzanne Mensch, Joyce Donneson and Stacy Rubio won in Westhampton Beach.

Here’s the breakdown by district:

Amagansett

The budget passed in a 145-33 vote. Steven Grabowski won the one board seat up for grabs, with 102 votes. Incumbent Mary Lownes took home 75 votes.

The Amagansett Elementary School proposed a $10.58 milion budget for next year, which carries a .38 percent tax levy decrease and a .68 percent tax rate decrease.

Bridgehampton

Bridgehampton’s 2015-16 budget passed in a 124-31 vote. Three candidates, running unopposed, took three board seats: Douglas DeGroot won 130 votes, Lillian Tyree Johnson won 134 votes and Ron White won 133 votes.

The district proposed a $12.8 million budget, which carries a 3.51 percent tax levy increase, but the tax rate is expected to decline 1.2 percent to $1.65 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. The district’s budget statement is online here.

East Hampton

The East Hampton school budget passed in a 440-73 vote, while John Ryan Sr., Liz Pucci, and Christina DeSanti won three board seats. Mr. Ryan took home 311 votes, Ms. Pucci took home 370 votes and Ms. DeSanti took home 395 votes. Candidate Deme Minskoff took home 286 votes.

The district has proposed a $66 million budget, which carries a tax levy increase of 1.62 percent. East Hampton school taxes are expected to rise 1.35 percent to $41 for a property assessed at $6,000.  The district budget newsletter is online here.

East Quogue

The East Quogue budget passed in a 575-118 vote.Remsenburg-Speonk elementary school teacher Christopher Hudson won the seat on the board vacated by board president Kathryn Tureski, with 348 votes. PTA president Carolyn Terry took home 299 votes.

The district proposed a $23 million budget, which would carry a tax levy increase of .7 percent and a tax rate increase of .27 percent, or $29.31 per $100 of assessed valuation. Taxes are expected rise to $11.72 per $1,000 of assessed valuation.

Greenport

The Greenport school budget passed in a 213-36 vote. Incumbents Babette Cornine and Daniel Creedon were running unopposed. Ms. Cornine took home 213 votes and Mr. Creedon took home 202 votes.

Greenport proposed a $16.94 million budget, which carries a tax levy increase of 2.52 percent, the absolute limit the school is allowed to raise through taxes under the state tax cap.

Hampton Bays

The Hampton Bays budget passed in a 970-288 vote. Newcomers Michael Dunn, a builder and photographer Elizabeth Scully won board seats. Mr. Dunn took home 943 votes and Ms. Scully took home 716. Incumbent Warren Booth lost his seat on the board, taking home just 548 votes.

The district proposed a $49.3 million budget, which carries a 1.6 percent tax levy increase.

Mattituck-Cutchogue School District

Mattituck-Cutchogue’s budget passed in a 445-219 vote. Incumbents Douglas Cooper and Laura Jens-Smith kept their seats, while Barbara Wheaton won the seat vacated by Sarah Hassildine. Mr. Cooper took home 487 votes, Ms. Jens-Smith took home 446 votes and Ms. Wheaton took home 524 votes.

The district proposed a $40.28 million budget, which carries a 1.74 percent tax levy increase, while the tax rate is expected to increase by 1.6 percent. The district’s budget statement is online here.

Montauk School

The Montauk budged passed in a 295-54 vote. Diane Hausman kept her board seat, taking home 218 votes, while her challenger,  Carmine Marion Jr. took just 137 votes.

The district proposed an $18.99 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 1.83 percent tax levy increase over last year.School taxes are expected to rise to $99 per $100 of assessed valuation.

New Suffolk  School

The New Suffolk budget passed in a 56-6 vote. Jason Cooper, running unopposed for the seat vacated by Brooke Dailey, won 59 votes. The tiny district proposes a $1.1 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 1.58 percent tax levy increase.

Oysterponds (Orient)

The Oysterponds budget passed in a 132-47 vote. Three candidates were running unopposed for three seats: incumbents Linda Goldsmith and Krista de Kerillis took home 133 and 118 votes, respectively and newcomer Phil Mastrangelo took 156 votes.

Ms. de Kerillis will receive a one-year term to complete the term of Alison Lyne, who has left the district. The other two candidates will receive three-year terms.

The district has proposed a $5.62 million budget, which carries a 1.62 tax levy increase and a 1.62 percent tax rate increase.

Quogue

The Quogue budget passed in a 94-10 vote. Incumbent Anael Alston, running unopposed for one board seat, took home 97 votes.

The district has proposed a $7.84 million budget, which carries a 1.17 percent tax levy increase and a 1.57 percent tax rate increase.

Riverhead Central School District

Incumbents Susan Koukounas and Ann Cotten-DeGrass kept their seats on Riverhead board, taking home 1,212 and 1,196 votes, respectively.

Civic watchdog Laurie Downs took home 1,064 votes, LIRR conductor Brad Harnig took home 701 votes  and business consultant Greg Fischer took home 886 votes.

The school budget passed in a 1,863-1,057 vote. Riverhead, the largest district on the East End, proposed a $125.91 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 3.94 percent tax levy increase, which is within the state tax cap for the district.

Three propositions also passed last night: the first authorizes the purchase of a piece of land in Calverton for a new bus garage, the construction of a buildings and grounds maintenance building on the main campus and the demolition of the existing bus garage, which will be replaced with athletic fields (Passed: 1,712 Yes – 1,148 No). The second proposition was to bond $1.2 million to build a turf field(Passed: 1,527 Yes – 1,366 No) and the third establishes a $5 million reserve fund (Passed: 1,796 Yes – 1,068 No).

Sag Harbor

The Sag Harbor budget passed in a 720-246 vote. The three board seat winners were Chris Tice, with 605 votes; Stephanie Bitis, with 677 votes; and Thomas Schiavoni, with 723 votes.

Print shop owner James Ding (243 votes) and financial advisor James Sanford (348 votes) were unsuccessful in their bids for board seats.

The $37.55 million proposed budget carries a 2.53 percent tax levy increase over last year. Taxes are expected to increase by 2.28 percent on the Southampton side of Sag Harbor and by 2.33 percent on the East Hampton side of the district.

Sagaponack

Tiny Sagapoonack’s budged passed in a 15-0 vote, while incumbent Joe Louchheim was re-elected with 15 votes, running unopposed.

The district proposed a $1.77 million budget, which carries a 2.53 percent tax levy increase, but the tax rate is expected to decrease by 3.25 percent, to $0.375 per $1,000 of assessed valuation.

Shelter Island

Shelter Island’s budget passed in a 219-48 vote. Two newcomers, Kathleen Lynch and Susan Binder, were running unopposed after incumbents Stephen Gessner and Marilynn Pysher did not seek reelection. Ms. Lynch took home 229 votes and Ms. Binder took home 243.

The school proposed a $10.99 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 1.7 percent tax levy increase over this year. The tax rate is expected to increase by 1.4 percent.

Southampton

The Southampton budget passed in a 482-222 vote. Incumbent Roberta Hunter was reelected, with 413 votes, and Donald King will join her on the board with 298 votes.

Unsuccessful candidates Robert Fischette and Natalie Sisco took home 255 votes and 283 votes, respectively.

The Southampton School District proposed a $65.1 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a tax levy increase of 3.69 percent, but a tax rate decrease of .54 percent. This budget does not pierce the state tax cap. Voters are expected to pay $2.39 per $1,000 of assessed valuation next year.

Southampton voters also approved proposals to spent $1.14 million from the capital reserve fund for building improvements, and  to authorize the district to spend funds to participate in programs run by the Southampton Youth Association and the Southampton Historical Museum. More information on the school budget is online here.

Southold

Southold’s budget passed in a 462-131 vote. Incumbent board members John Crean and Paulette Ofrias were reelected after running unopposed. Mr. Crean took home 465 votes and Ms. Ofrias took home 468 votes.

Southold has proposed a $29.5 million budget for next year, which carries a 1.66 percent tax levy increase and a 1.66 percent tax rate increase.

Springs

The Springs School budget passed in a 293-121 vote. Barbara Dayton, running unopposed for the seat vacated by board member John Grant, took home 332 votes.

The district has proposed a $27.36 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 1.58 percent tax levy increase. Voters also passed two propositions: on the use of  money from its $2 million cap reserve fund to build a new parking lot and revamp ball fields, and on a new, five-year tuition agreement with East Hampton High School. The Springs School Budget newsletter is online here.

Tuckahoe

The Tuckahoe School budget passed in a 181-92 vote. Financial planner Sean Hattrick, running unopposed to fill the one board seat vacated by Harald Steudte, took home 190 votes.

The district is proposing a $19.1 million budget for 2015-16, which carries a 3.7 percent tax levy increase and a 3.98 percent tax rate increase. These figures do not pierce the state tax cap. Voters are expected  pay $7.70 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. Tuckahoe voters also passed two propositions: to spend $54,386 to participate in the Southampton Youth Association and to pay $7,868 to participate in programs at the Parrish Art Museum. The district’s budget notice is online here.

Wainscott

Wainscott’s budget passed unanimously in a 40-0 vote. Incumbent board member Kelly Anderson, running unopposed to keep her seat, took home 39 votes.

The district has proposed a $3.06 million budget that carries a 2.04 percent tax levy decrease, their third year in a row of declining tax levies.

Westhampton Beach

The Westhampton Beach buget passed in a 535-112 vote. Suzanne Mensch, Joyce Donneson and Stacy Rubio won the school board race. Ms. Mensch took home 461 votes, Ms. Donneson took home 414 and Ms. Rubio took home 412.

Unsuccessful candidate Steve Wisnoski took home 349 votes.

The district is proposing a $55 million budget, which carries a tax rate increase of 3.5 percent, to $6.48 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. More information about the budget is online here.

 

Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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