Huntington voters elected Jen Hebert and Adam Spector to the school board Tuesday night while approving the $109-million budget. The budget passed 2,318-1,139 and the capital improvements plan 2,460- 837.
The new lineup has the potential to change the board’s position on the status of , which was closed by the board last summer on a 4-3 vote because of concerns about crime in the neighborhood.
Both Spector and Hebert have supported reopening the building in their campaigns.
Board president Bill Dwyer lost, and graciously conceded Tuesday night as the vote tallies appearing on a screen made the results clear. Dwyer said, "I'm confident that the results are the will of the community. They wanted a change."
Other candidates turned down in favor of Spector and Hebert were Jim Cahill and Susan Tully. In addition to Dwyer's seat, current board member Christine Bene created an opening when she decided not to run again.
A crowd gathered in the lobby of as the polls closed and machine tallies were totaled. The gathering had the feeling of an old-fashioned town meeting as people chatted and watched the results appear on the screen,occasionally breaking out in cheers and applause. Administrators, other board members and candidates and their families were among the crowd.
The capital improvement plan involving replacement of old oil tanks and other work, also passed by a large margin.
Spector, who ran for the board last year and lost by four votes, said he'd made an effort to speak with all segments of the community and felt he'd gained a good understanding of district issues.
Hebert said the results showed that "People have been paying attention. They know that I have been working for the community. And indeed the community was listening." She said some of the bigger issues to be tackled included the status of Abrams school and curriculum. "We have two schools on the needs-improvement list. That can't continue." She said she hopes to learn from current board members.Totals Hebert 1,677 Spector 1,656 Dwyer 1,327 Cahill 1,242 Tully 842