School Budget Passed; Challengers Adolff, Conti, Aglialoro Voted In

The budget passed with just under 69 percent of the votes (3,217 votes)


Clarkstown School District voters made their choices clear on Tuesday passing the budget, which received 68.72 percent of the vote, and electing newcomers Wendy Adolff, Mike Aglialoro and Chris Conti.

The $180 million budget maintained instructional programs and staff. It included funds for a boiler replacement at Clarkstown North High School and continuation of the district’s Technology Refresh Program. The budget stayed within the two percent state property tax cap and drew almost $6 million from reserve funds.

Each of the winning candidates seeking election to three-year terms on the school board received more than 2,200 votes. Adolff received 2,295 votes, Aglialoro received 3,297 votes and Conti received 2,668.

Adolff is a 47-year-old New City resident, who works as an Independent Title Closer. Aglialoro, 43, lives in West Nyack and is a portfolio manager for a money management firm in New York City. Congers resident Conti is 41 years old and is a secondary math teacher at BOCES. 

“I appreciate everyone’s support,” said Aglialoro. “I think the message is the community wanted a new start.”

"The only endorsement I needed were the votes. I’m so grateful for everybody that believed in me and came out to vote," said Adolff. "The district is going to move forward in a positive manner. The community has spoken and their concerns will be addressed."

"I hope to move the board in a positive direction," said Conti. "I'm ecstatic about the victory and humbled that over 2,000 people voted for me."

The budget passed with 3,217 votes in favor and 1,464 against for a total number of 4,681.

The other candidates were: challenger Leo Macias and incumbents Phil DeGaetano and Donna Ehrenberg. DeGaetano, a New City resident, served one term on the board. New City resident Ehrenberg, 50, served one term on the school board and is an assistant director and parent advocate at the Rockland Independent Living Center. Macias, 35, works as an assistant principal at Yonkers Montessori Academy and lives in Congers.

“The people have spoken tonight,” said DeGaetano. “I’m happy the budget passed in good manner. Good luck to all three of them I know they’ll do a fine job.”

The $180,931,141 budget is 3.02 percent higher than last year’s spending plan. It would increase the tax rate by 2.37 percent or an average of $163 per homeowner.  It stays within the state’s two percent property tax cap. 


ClarkstownMom #18 May 16, 2012 at 03:47 AM
A wonderful night for Clarkstown. Let the healing begin! Congratulations Mike, Chris, & Wendy!!!!
Tom Truth May 16, 2012 at 03:50 AM
This is a step in the right direction, but PLEASE people do not have sort term memory - there are more contentious people still on the board that should also be ousted as their terms come up. Serving on the school board is a tough, non-paying position, but it is nevertheless one that should be responsible to the constituents it services. Maybe this vote will serve as a wake-up call for the rest of the board. But think to yourself right now, had all 7 seats been up for a vote, would you have returned any of the current members back onto the board? If the answer is yes, then problem solved (at least for now). But if the answer is no, then there is still work to be done cleaning house.
karen kasman May 16, 2012 at 05:07 AM
It is a beautiful day in the neighborhood! Congratulations Wendy, Mike, Chris and Clarkstown!
Rhea Vogel May 16, 2012 at 05:23 AM
Congratulations to Wendy, Mike and Chris! Yes, a wonderful night for Clarkstown
Phil Leiter May 16, 2012 at 05:58 AM
Many people spent many hours attending meetings, researching, learning and sharing information openly with the community. I am truly proud of these individuals who took so much time to learn how their school district works and, more importantly, how it should work. And I am proud of the residents of Clarkstown for taking the time to make an informed decision at the polls. Let's not just skip over this accomplishment by the voters of Clarkstown. The election of three new Board members by substantial margins, and the passage of the budget by a margin of greater than 2-1, is a significant voter statement. The CCSD may finally be moving in a direction of true collaboration through open and transparent leadership by its Board. To be sure, there is much work to do. Whether it is to put our house in order or to continue to clean house remains to be seen. But, at the moment, the potential to do either in a constructive manner that improves the District is now a much greater possibility.
Michael N. Hull May 16, 2012 at 10:37 AM
Congratulations to the new board members and best wishes for your success.  You have big issues to deal with many of which are financial.   The Town is becoming more fed up with rising taxes and that issue will dominate and limit many of your options. I presume the first question that will arise is who will be the school board's president.   It seems to me that the only way to go is to choose one of the newly elected trio.   The school board needs a new start, with a new president who will not be encumbered by past bitterness as he/she provides leadership to this board.    I suspect some of the old guard my raise the issue of new members' experience but that objection is demolished every time we elect a new President of the United States.   Of the three new board members my personal opinion is that Mike Aglialoro would be an excellent choice.  He has demonstrated leadership and business acumen and the school board should avail itself of this excellent opportunity to have these skills applied to management of the newly formulated school board.
mike sullivan May 16, 2012 at 11:41 AM
Although i might have some different views Congratulations to Mike, Wendy,and Chris !!!! Now is the time to all come together and focus on the kids And thank you to all that voted!!!
Clarkstown Resident May 16, 2012 at 12:25 PM
Congratulations Mike, Chris and Wendy!
ADK May 16, 2012 at 12:31 PM
Congratulations to the winners...it takes guts to run, but please remember it takes perseverance to lead for the long haul. All the challengers ran on a platform of objectivity and fairness. Let's hope this becomes reality. Thanks also to the three outgoing board members. It always looks easier from the outside. Those of us who had the privilege of serving know otherwise.
Mike Hirsch May 16, 2012 at 12:47 PM
What I have learned from the final vote tallies is: (1) That the people who vote in the school board elections are much better informed than the people who vote in the town board elections, and (2) That the absence of political parties in the school board elections is a plus for democracy because people vote more for the candidate and less for a particular political party.
Joanie Taylor May 16, 2012 at 01:14 PM
I know it's a happy day, but one thing needs to be noted. Leo Macias did not even show up at Central Offices last night to hear the election results! Either did CTA President Greg Montague, Lorette Adams or Alan Katz. Hmmmm, I guess they knew it was over!
sbinder May 16, 2012 at 01:39 PM
Congrats the the 3 winners. They are excellent people that have repeatedly shown their dedication to the comunity and our children over the years. Thanks to the voters of the town as well for overwhelmingly supporting our fine schools and most importantly supporting the future of our wonderful children!
Clarkstown Dad May 16, 2012 at 01:44 PM
My compliments to the Voters of Clarkstown .... You got it right. Now it's time to have a board that will work together for the benefit of our District and Children and not their personal gains/agenda's. No one is expecting you to agree with each other all the time, but do it the right way. I just wonder what could have been achieved if they were elected 3 years ago and this group could have worked with Dr. Keller-Cogan ... hmmm. @Mike Sullivan ... gracious/classy post since I know you really did not support them.
Mike Hirsch May 16, 2012 at 02:34 PM
Stop it.
Sigmund Freud May 16, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Atta way, Mike! Now this is what I call BROTHERHOOD/SISTERHOOD!
Sigmund Freud May 16, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Right on ADK
Robert Wall May 16, 2012 at 03:23 PM
or what would have been achieved if we had the new superintendent to be 3 years ago....hmm
Dave Bling May 16, 2012 at 04:17 PM
Clarkstown Dad May 16, 2012 at 05:43 PM
@Robert Wall ... nothing different with that group .... they probably would have been fighting to get rid of that one too ......... it is/was all about the power and doing what the Union heads told them to do.
Clarkstown Parent May 17, 2012 at 12:18 AM
Who ever is coming on board should not come to fire staff or with personal agenda, focus on education
Sam May 17, 2012 at 03:30 PM
All I can say is that Phil Degaetano got what he deserved. Hey Phil, this is what happens when you tell one group one thing and then another something else. Its a small town we all talk to each other. And we voted you out. Now lets see what the pay will be for the new superintendent that they hire. My bet is that Phil promised to pay more than then paid the one they ousted. I say Cuomo should do what Christie did in New Jersey.Cap it at $175 thousand.
Mike Hirsch May 17, 2012 at 04:48 PM
Sam, First of all, let us all move forward. No need to talk negatively about defeated board members. It serves no purpose. Secondly, I think you will lose your bet. I don't think that the new super will be paid in wages and benefits near what the old super was. Lastly, I wholeheartedly agree with you on Christie's pay cap. Unfortunately, Cuomo doesn't have half the set that Christie does, so I don't think it will happen.
Dzeldaz May 17, 2012 at 08:52 PM
Thank you, Joanie, for your observations. They are important in the name of free speech - a right that is still in the Constitution. All are encouraged to express that right. Telling someone to stop is an attempt to stifle rights of others. Attempts to stifle thoughts and opinions are exactly what we don't need. Congratulations to those who won. May tomorrow be a better day for Clarkstown schools, students, teachers, parents, staff and administrators.


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