6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday at Carle Place High School.
The district proposes a $49,440,424 school budget for 2018-19, a 0.33 percent increase from the current $49,279,492. The local tax levy would rise 1.99 percent, from $41,690,546 to $42,519,900.
The increase is within the state’s tax cap limit of 2.72 percent, so a simple majority will be required to approve the budget.
The district did not provide the dollar amount of the average school tax paid on single-family homes because assessment data was not available.
The proposed budget includes a 0.75 percent salary increase and an average step increase of 1.75 percent for teachers. It would add full-time special-education and business teacher positions.
The ballot will include three additional propositions. Proposition 2 sets up a $1-million repair reserve fund to buy equipment and fund renovations, reconstruction and construction. Proposition 3 authorizes the district to spend $1.73 million from a capital reserve fund for districtwide security-camera and security-network replacements and upgrades, door replacement and electrical-system upgrades at the high school and reconstruction costs at the Rushmore Avenue School. Proposition 4 authorizes spending $2.27-million from a capital reserve fund for remaining abatement and reconstruction costs at the Rushmore Avenue School.
Four candidates are vying for three at-large seats: David M. Argenzio, Neal McLaughlin and incumbents Anthony Bulzomi and Joseph LoCurto. The third-highest vote-getter finishes the remaining two years in the three-year term of Barry Dennis, who died last summer. The other two terms are three years.
David M. Argenzio
BACKGROUND: Argenzio, 48, has lived in the district for 16 years. A retired New York City Police officer, he is currently director of safety and security for a private school in New York City. Argenzio grew up in Astoria and graduated from William Cullen Bryant High School in Woodside. Argenzio also graduated from the New York City Police Academy. He studied criminal justice at Queens College but didn’t complete a degree. Argenzio has two children attending district public schools. This is his first run for the school board.
ISSUES: “All schools have to put a lot of attention to safety and security, Argenzio said. He said he will bring to the school board seven years of experience as a director of safety and security for a school with over 1,700 students. Argenzio said that as a board member he would “educate the district’s senior administrators on the proper policies and technology to put in place.” Argenzio continued, “I manage a several-million dollar operating budget for security and know and how to get the best product for your dollar.” Argenzio said that the current board members “have done a very good job to be fiscally conservative and still provide the district what it needs.” He said that he would help the board and the district “continue on that path.”
BACKGROUND: Bulzomi, who is in his 40s, was elected to the Carle Place school board in 2012. He is a construction manager. Bulzomi ran unsuccessfully for a North Hempstead Town council seat in 2013, and for town supervisor in 2015.
ISSUES: Bulzomi did not respond to email requests for background and issues statements.
BACKGROUND: LoCurto, 62, was raised in the district and is a graduate of Carle Place High School. He is a consultant for the credit-card industry. LoCurto, whose two children are district school graduates, was elected to the Carle Place school board in 2012. He served as the board vice president for five years and is currently the school board president.
ISSUES: LoCurto said he is qualified “because of the track record of success the Carle Place Board has achieved during my tenure and my contributions toward those achievements.” LoCurto, “I’m proud of what we did for the schools for six years.” He said the biggest challenge facing the district is school security, which he said is addressed by a ballot proposition allocating $1.7-million from capital reserve funds to be spent on facility improvements. He said, “The bulk of those funds, approximately $900,000, will be spent on security enhancements for the district.”
BACKGROUND: McLaughlin, 60, has lived in the district for 21 years. He works as senior property manager for a commercial real estate company in Jericho. McLaughlin grew up in Williston Park and is a 1975 graduate of St. Mary’s Boys High School in Manhasset. He earned a bachelor of business administration degree in management and marketing from Iona College. McLaughlin formerly coached girls soccer for the Carle Place Soccer Club. McLaughlin has a child attending a district public school. This is his first run for the school board.
ISSUES: McLaughlin said that his background in commercial real estate will aid him in assessing the district’s security needs as it makes a “big investment in security” with proposed expenditures from a capital reserve fund. “I’ve written security policies, developed security manuals and hired security contractors,” he said. McLaughlin said that his business experience also includes working with unions, which will help in negotiating with teachers. “I know how to negotiate a contract,” he said. McLaughlin said that as a board member he would work to keep school taxes “affordable” and help the district “maintain services and programs within the tax cap.”