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Massapequa school board swears in 2 new members but says 5th seat may stay open

The Massapequa school board met on Thursday.

The Massapequa school board met on Thursday. Credit: Danielle Silverman

The Massapequa school board swore in two new trustees at a meeting Thursday night.

New trustees Jeanine Caramore and Kerry Wachter were elected to the school board in May.

The board did not take action on the fifth trustee seat, which is empty. The board voted 4-0 in June to vacate the seat held by Brian Butler, citing poor attendance.

Board president Timothy Taylor said the trustees will not immediately appoint or hold a special election for a replacement.

“We’re going to go it with four of us,” he said.

Taylor said the fifth seat may remain vacant until the next regularly scheduled school board election in May 2019.

Attorney Richard J. Guercio said that New York State law calls on school boards to fill vacancies through special elections or appointments within 90 days. But he said that there is precedent for boards opting not to do so as well.

“In my opinion, it’s not illegal” to leave school board seats vacant in such cases, he said after the meeting.

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