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Skaneateles BOE elects officers, plans for new capital project proposal

The new incarnation of the Skaneateles Board of Education at their July 2 meeting. From left: Geralyn Huba, Evan Dreyfuss, Vice President Thomas Lambdin, President Kathryn Carlson, Interim Superintendent of Schools Judy Pastel, Sue Benjamin, Sue Murphy, Margaret Usdansky Niebuhr.

The new incarnation of the Skaneateles Board of Education at their July 2 meeting. From left: Geralyn Huba, Evan Dreyfuss, Vice President Thomas Lambdin, President Kathryn Carlson, Interim Superintendent of Schools Judy Pastel, Sue Benjamin, Sue Murphy, Margaret Usdansky Niebuhr. Joe Genco

The Skaneateles Board of Education welcomed its newest members and held elections for its officer positions at its July 2 reorganization meeting.

Newly elected board member Margaret Usdansky-Niebuhr and re-elected board member Thomas Lambdin took the oath of office for the beginning of their three year terms. Geralyn Huba who was also elected to the board in the May 21 election, had already taken over for departing member Michael Card.

The board also unanimously elected Kathryn Carlson to be its new president and Thomas Lambdin to be vice president. Evan Dreyfuss, who was board president for the previous three school years, is still on the board, but decided to step down.

Preparing for a new capital project proposal

The board also held a regular meeting during which it revisited the issue of proposing the community a proposal to bond for a capital project for deferred maintenance and safety and security issues for the middle school and high school buildings.

An original proposal for a $22.7 million capital project was rejected by the public in a vote held on June 15. That proposal called for re-doing many of the roofs, repairing leaking masonry, asbestos abatement, safety and security upgrades, upgrades to the high school auditorium, building a new $5.48 million middle school gymnasium and other projects.

Board members said that they have started holding meetings with small groups of community members to get feedback on the original proposal and communicate the importance of many of the items that will have to be included in a future proposal.

“The community has spoken about the scope of the project and wants us to cut it back to the critical issues at this point,” Carlson said.

The board moved to authorize a geologic survey to de done on the ground under and around the middle school gymnasium to get a better idea of what kind of work would be required to repair and stabilize the current structure. The study will be conducted by CME Associates and cost no more than $6,600.

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