Incumbent East Quogue School Board member Kathryn Tureski is running unopposed for her fourth three-year term on Tuesday, May 15. She did not face a challenge in 2009, the last time she sought reelection.
The board’s current vice president, Ms. Tureski, 52, has lived in the district for the past 41 years. She and her husband, Robert, have two children, Robert and Christian, both of whom attended East Quogue Elementary School. Robert, 19, graduated from Westhampton Beach High School in 2010 and is now a sophomore at Vassar College, while Christian, 16, is currently a junior at the high school.
“I’m seeking reelection because I like what I do and feel that I bring good ideas, discussions to the board,” Ms. Tureski, a homemaker, said in a prepared statement. “I continue to advocate for the children and stakeholders of East Quogue by providing them with the tools for a good education without overtaxing our district.”
She noted that the most important issue facing the district, which boasts only an elementary school, is the new 2 percent cap on the tax levy imposed for the first time this year by New York State. Ms. Tureski said she and her four fellow board members worked hard to make sure the district’s 2012-13 budget came in under the cap. If they had exceeded the cap, 60 percent of taxpayers, or a supermajority, would have had to approve next year’s spending plan. Since they did not pierce the cap, the district requires only a simple majority.
“It was hard, but we were able to do this,” she said, referring to the budget that taxpayers will be asked to approve on Tuesday. “We asked our teachers and administrators for salary concessions, cut some positions to part-time, and cut line item expenses, keeping our programs intact.”
Though she would like to offer new programming, including expanding the school’s foreign language curriculum and adding a gifted program, Ms. Tureski said that is not possible in the current economic climate.
She is past co-president and treasurer of the East Quogue PTA, and is actively involved in the Westhampton Beach High School PTO. She is president of the Westhampton Beach Theatre Booster Club and sits on the Youth Ministry Committee at her home parish, the Westhampton Presbyterian Church.