By Jack Fischer
Voting for the school board will start tomorrow, May 21, bringing an end to one of the most passionate races in recent memory. Paul Wasserman and Louis “Sonny” Linder have challenged incumbents President Sal Maglietta and Jonathan Satran (who was appointed in August following Rosella Ranno’s resignation) for their seats on the board.
Linder & Wasserman have been focused on doing everything in their power to work within the state’s tax cap while preserving the integrity of the schools. After examining both publically available data and information from FOIA requests, Wasserman says there are serious problems with the current situation.
“I started paying attention once the budget came out … and the numbers just didn’t add up. I made it my full time job to try to figure out exactly what was going on,” said Wasserman. “We really don’t know exactly what’s been done, they haven’t answered the questions.” In an email to the community, he explains “[The board] is on pace to spend $1 million on salaries in excess of the amount in the original budget.” “A lot of [transparency] seems to have been removed,” said Linder at the Meet the Candidates Night. However, incumbent Jonathan Satran vehemently denied this: “You can say something as many times as you want … it doesn’t make it true,” he explained.
In a campaign flyer, Satran and Maglietta succinctly described their goals as “Sustainable Decisions, Long Term Stability.” “We’ve heard a lot of negativity … [but] I am very proud of this community and what this board has done,” said Maglietta. “I’ve been troubled by the constant bickering and discourse that I’ve seen plague this community. We need to rise above these differences,” Satran added.
All the candidates are passionate about their role in Briarcliff. “I am running because I would like to complete the good work that we have started … I think I have brought a moderate perspective to the board. I am very open to new ideas and different perspectives” said Satran. “[I’m bringing] a balanced perspective by listening to all points of view to drive a quality education and experience for our children in a sustainable and fiscally prudent manner” said Maglietta. “I would be honored to be a trustee and look out for both your children, and your money” said Wasserman. “Transparency, everybody kicks that word around, but it’s really just about sharing openly and honestly to try to solve the problems together” said Linder.
Stay tuned with the Briarcliff Bulletin for election results.