Oakland Okays Budgets

thumbupsqResidents in the FLOW area, Franklin Lakes, Oakland and Wyckoff, approved all four school budgets. Each local school district won approval, as did the budget for the regional high schools.

Conscious of the dire economic situation facing the nation, the school boards proposed some of the most conservative budgets prepared in years with some increases being barely over 1%. Below is a breakdown of the approved budgets.

Approved Budgets

Franklin Lakes K-8
Yes: 723 No: 564

Oakland K-8
Yes: 837 No: 560

Yes: 1,734 No: 1,349

With regards to board elections, the only upset appeared to be the defeat of long time member Geri Petersen. The one open seat available in Oakland was won by Elizabeth Pierce who had made the “out of school conduct code” part of her platform. This policy, extending school authority to cover student behavior 24/7, had been opposed by many parents.

Franklin Lakes re-elected Ira Belsky for another three year term, and Robert Gebhard ran unopposed to fill the seat being vacated by Tom Madigan.

On the K-8 school boards, only Franklin Lakes offered a contest. Incumbents Joseph Conti and Kathie Schwartz won re-election and they will be joined by Margaret Bennett who garnered the most votes of any candidate. The other candidates ran unopposed.

Below is a breakdown of the board elections:

Regional High School Board:

Oakland Representative 1 open seat
Geri Gottuso-Petersen 543
Elizabeth Pierce 642
Franklin Lakes
Ira Belsky 725
Robert Gebhard 1,923

Franklin Lakes K-8 3 open seats
Margaret Bennett 679
Kathie Schwartz 653
Joseph Conti 652
Michael Ben-David 436
Ann Turi Connelly 409
John Woods Jr. 372

Oakland K-8 2 open seats
Robert Akovity 621
Russell Talamini 666

Wyckoff 2 open seats
Elizbeth DeGregorio 1,921
Carl J. Anello 1,710