Tuesday, May 21 2013 21:24
Riverhead Central School District voters on Tuesday approved a $117.5 million 2013-2014 operating budget by a vote of 1,520 to 1,252.
The vote was split on two propositions on the ballot pertaining to the proposed construction of a new district bus garage.
Proposition one, approving the establishment of a savings account — funded by proceeds of the sale of the district's Tuthill's Lane property as well as by excess fund balance monies— was approved by a vote of 1,382 to 1,266.
Proposition two, approving the purchase of two parcels of land on Enterprise Zone Drive in Riverside at a cost of up to $480,000, to be used for access to district-owned land — adjacent to Phillips Avenue school — where a new bus facility is planned, was rejected by a vote of 1,413 no to 1,153 yes.
Newcomer Chris Dorr was the top vote-getter in the school board election with 1,423 votes. Incumbent trustee Amelia Lantz was re-elected with 1,270 votes. Incumbent Jeff Falisi lost his re-election bid with a third-place showing of 1,082 votes.
School Superintendent Nancy Carney said she was very happy the budget passed.
"I want to thank the voters for supporting our budget and for their vision for the future," she said, referring to approval of the ballot proposition establishing a captial reserve fund for the future construction of a new bus garage. Of the failed proposition authorizing the purchase of land in Riverside, Carney said district officials "acknowledge the will of the people" and will explore other options.
Dorr said he was somewhat surprised he won the most votes in the three-way race for two seats on the school board.
"I'm thankful for the community coming out to support me," he said.
Lantz, re-elected to a second three-year term, said she was very happy the budget passed. "That's the most important thing," she said. On the bus garage issue, "we have more work to do," Lantz said.