Vote set on $19.6M North Shore school bond

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A proposed $19.6 million bond measure to fix up the infrastructure at the North Shore school district is drawing the ire of one property owners group, which claims the measure is too costly.

Voters in the Sea Cliff-based district are slated to head to the polls Tuesday to decide the fate of the referendum, which would cover replacement windows, floors and roofs, security upgrades, repairs to the electrical systems and new masonry walls, among other items.

The district estimated that there would be no change in what taxpayers currently pay because the bond would replace older ones that will be paid off.

"As we're retiring debt, we're adding debt," said Herman Berliner, president of the school board.

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But Anthony Losquadro, director of the Sea Cliff-North Shore Property Owners Committee, said the measure included too many items, including some he said were cosmetic and unnecessary.

In addition, the decommissioning of the Long Island Power Authority's Glenwood Landing power plant, and the subsequent loss of tax revenue from it, means voters shouldn't take on more debt now, Losquadro said.

"Send the proposal back to the board and let them refine it and pare it down and bring it back to us for another vote," he said.

But Berliner said the list already represents the most essential repairs, and it would be more costly in the long run to put them off.

"There are no frills, no fluff, nothing like that in the bond issue," Berliner said. "We take very seriously our fiduciary responsibilities and looked at what made the most sense in a very difficult economic time."

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