7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday at East Quogue Elementary School.
The district proposes a $24,366,274 budget for 2017-18, an increase of 2.12 percent from the current $23,861,579. The tax levy would rise by 1.96 percent, from $21,781,579 to $22,207,785.
This increase is equal to the district’s tax-cap limit, so a simple majority is needed to pass the budget.
School taxes on the average single-family home would rise by 0.51 percent, from $5,719 to $5,748.
The proposed budget includes funds for a 0.75 percent salary increase for teachers. It also includes funding for part-time positions equivalent to three full-time positions, covering security guards, a science aide and a kindergarten aide. The proposed budget would not reduce programs or staffing.
A proposition asks voters to establish a capital reserve fund of up to $300,000 for renovations and a range of upgrades for classrooms, the auditorium, cafeteria, plumbing, HVAC and energy efficiency improvements, lighting upgrades, boiler replacements, playground upgrades and vehicle purchases. It will be funded by any excess money in the general fund, up to $150,000 this year and each year thereafter for the 10-year term of the fund. There is no impact to the tax levy in establishing the reserve.
- District website: eastquogue.k12.ny.us
Brian Babcock, Kristin Jankowski and Richard King are seeking two at-large seats. Terms are three years.
BACKGROUND: Babcock, 42, is a FedEx courier who has lived in the district for 15 years. He is a former chief, former treasurer and a current volunteer and EMT with Hampton Bays Volunteer Ambulance, a former chairman of the Southampton Town EMS advisory committee, was a coach with Westhampton Youth Wrestling and is now an East End Little League coach. He has two children in district schools, and one attending Westhampton Beach Middle School.
ISSUES: The main issue is educating the children, and Babcock said he would use his experience budgeting in the ambulance squad to find dollars in the budget and also look for grants and donors. The library hasn’t been updated because of tight budgets and tax-cap constraints, he noted. “I would love to redevelop the library and its contents, including updating its investigative tools, advanced computer technology and with staffing on a full-time basis,” he said. Babcock said he’d also like to recognize current and former students, build a school paper and update school websites and local papers about student accomplishments. “I’m outgoing and goal-oriented, and I would work to build consensus to get things done,” he said.
BACKGROUND: Jankowski, 41, is the owner and chief financial officer of a hardware and home improvement store and has lived in the district 12 years. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Bryant College. She has two children in a district school and served three years as treasurer of the PTA.
ISSUES: Finances are the most important issue facing the district, she said, and she would bring a business background to the board. The district is in a better position financially, but it is important to stay on top of things. “With much of the budget going out in tuition payments for students in grades 7-12, it’s important to make sure what remains is used wisely, and my background will help with that,” she said. “It’s time for someone with a business background to be on the board.”
BACKGROUND: King, 41, has been a district resident for 13 years. He is a teacher in East Hampton and his wife is employed in the East Quogue district. He has two children in district schools and a 4-year-old in pre-K. He earned a bachelor’s degree at SUNY Plattsburgh and a master’s degree in physical education at Hofstra University, as well as a state school district administrator’s certificate from LIU Post. He is a PAL lacrosse coach for fourth-grade girls and K-1 boys.
ISSUES: Budget issues are the district’s main concern, King said, and as a small district, East Quogue always faces the possibility of having to pierce the tax cap. “It’s inconsistent from year to year and I’d like to use my experience in the educational system to bring a well-rounded perspective to the board,” he said. He’d specifically like to see the foreign language programs restored and said he would work to make sure decisions are made with an eye toward consistency, such as maintaining transportation limits rather than changing the mile limit one year to save funds.