League of Women Voters of Cazenovia member Anne Redfern, right, poses audience-submitted questions to board of education candidates Cindy Bell Tobey, left, KARIN Marris, Pat Vogl and Nicole McLean.
Photo by Pierce Smith.
Cazenovia In preparation for the upcoming vote on May 15, the four candidates hoping to occupy one of the three available seats on the Cazenovia Central School District Board of Education gathered for a forum on May 3 in Cazenovia High School.
The event was hosted by the League of Women Voters of Cazenovia and attended by about a dozen area residents. Anne Redfern moderated proceedings, and audience members submitted candidate questions regarding topics such as declining enrollment, areas of potential improvement, next year’s budget, incorporating preschool at Burton Street Elementary School and religious education in the district.
Incumbents Cindy Bell Tobey, Karin Marris and Pat Vogl, along with newcomer Nicole McLean, presented their platforms and took turns answering the submitted questions.
Voting will take place at the high school auditorium during the May 15 budget vote. Board member terms last three years. Additional information on the candidates can be found at caz.cnyric.org.
Marris is a lifelong resident of Central New York and has lived in the CCSD for more than 25 years with her husband, Richard. She is seeking re-election for a fourth term, having served on the board for the last nine years. The youngest of her three children is a senior at the high school this year, with her two older daughters enrolled in area colleges. Marris is a graduate of Onondaga Community College, SUNY Upstate Medical Center and Syracuse University College of Law, and has been an attorney for the past 23 years.
She said she thinks a diverse set of opinions on the board allows the best possible solution to be reached, and hopes to continue to enhance the quality of education students of CCSD are given. Marris said although some things have had to be eliminated from the budget in recent years, decisions were made on programs that could possibly be absorbed by community organizations. She discussed the possibility of consolidating the district’s buildings if enrollment continues to decline, and forming a constructive work period for those students who are not dismissed for religious education classes.