TODAY'S PAPER
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Long IslandEducation

Bayport-Blue Point

BUDGET

SPENDING $73,443,966, a 2.34 percent increase from the current $71,761,393. 

TAX LEVY 3.77 percent increase, from $50,073,387 to $51,963,500. This is equal to the district's 3.77 percent tax-cap limit, so a simple majority vote is required for approval.

TEACHER PAY / PROGRAMS Includes a 1 percent contractual increase and an average step increase of 2.3 percent. The proposed budget supports implementation of the first phase of the Teachers College Reading Program in kindergarten and first grade; expansion of the Chromebook initiative to grades seven and 11; and implements an expanded mental health curriculum. It also funds introduction of new STEM software in the middle school and the AP Capstone and other courses based on student interest.

PROPOSITIONS

Proposition 2 asks if the Board of Education should modify student eligibility for public school transportation for kindergarten through grade five by changing to a 1.23-mile limit from the existing 1.25-mile limit, at no additional cost to the district. If approved, the change would be effective at the start of the 2019-20 school year. Approval of the proposition will not affect the tax levy.

WHEN | WHERE

7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Bayport-Blue Point High School. www.bbpschools.org

CANDIDATES

Four candidates are running for three positions, which are elected by seat. John Kroog and Alexander Wellems are vying for the seat of incumbent Molly Licalzi, who is not seeking re-election. Incumbent Brian Johnson is running unopposed for his seat. Jason Borowski is running unopposed for the seat of Katherine Heinlein, which she vacated a few months ago. Terms are three years.

John Kroog

BACKGROUND Kroog, 50, has lived in the district for 17 years. He is a sales manager for a medical company. He has a bachelor's degree from St. John's University and had taken credits toward a master's degree in elementary education at Dowling College. He has three children in the district and serves as president of the Bayport-Blue Point Youth Lacrosse Program.

KEY ISSUE "I am running to further strengthen our collaborative partnerships between the Board of Education and the community — to continue to keep building an environment where students, teachers and the community can all flourish together."

Alexander Wellems

BACKGROUND Wellems, 37, has lived in the district for five years. He is a director of small molecule product development for a major pharmaceutical firm. He holds a bachelor's degree in science from Case Western Reserve University. He is a member of the district's Budget Advisory Committee and is vice president of the Blue Point Community Coalition. He also is a member of the Blue Point Elementary PTA and Friends of the Library, and is an assistant coach for Bayport-Blue Point Lacrosse. He has two children, a daughter in second grade and a son who will enter kindergarten in the fall.

KEY ISSUE "Maintaining the established standard of excellence and providing students and teachers an environment to thrive, while understanding and managing the factors providing upward budget pressures. As part of the Budget Advisory Committee, I was able to listen, understand, and contribute feedback to implemented and conceptual solutions to help manage the budget within the tax cap while maintaining the support that has allowed BBP school district to become a National Blue Ribbon School."

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