PORT CHESTER, N.Y. Port Chester voters passed the board of education's adopted 2012-13 budget of $81.3 million on Tuesday by a vote of nearly 2 to 1 with a total of 1030 votes, according to unofficial election results.
On April 19, the board of education adopted a budget compliant with the property tax levy cap that totals $81,320,560. The budget will increase the tax levy by 2.7 percent and eliminate 13.5 reading teachers.
"I'm really thrilled the community came out and supported the school," Superintendent Edward Kliszus said. "The PTA was very successful in getting the message out."
In the board of education race, the voters resoundingly reelected 20-year board veteran Jim Dreves, while newcomer Tom Corbia edged out current board President Blanca Lopez by less than 100 votes. Unofficial tallies announced by school officials Tuesday night show that Dreves captured 1,040 votes, more than the budget, while Corbia nabbed 910 and Blanca Lopez received 814.
"I'm pleasantly surprised," Corbia said. "I had a number of people helping me. I'm really happy, but now the work begins."
Former Port Chester High School Assistant Principal Mark Santora said he voted in favor of the budget and spoke about the importance of approving it.
"If we don't approve it there will be a tremendous loss of resources," Santora said. "We don't want to lose more than we already have."
Lifelong Port Chester senior citizen Joe Langworth said he voted yes too and cited the district's ability to stay within the cap as his reasoning.
"I was satisfied with the increase. I felt it was very reasonable," Langworth said.
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