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Ridgewood BOE Elections to Remain in Spring

Board tabled discussion; two seats up in April election

Moving elections to November would save money and ensure the Ridgewood school board an easier time pushing a budget past taxpayers, but concerns of getting lost in the national shuffle and a quieter voice for residents mean spring election flings will remain.

Trustee Bob Hutton affirming the school board buck the recent trend of districts moving elections, which would eliminate a public vote on the budget should it come at or under the 2 percent cap. Hutton's resolution passed.

The Ridgewood News reported that on Monday the school board elected to table further action on moving elections. The article quotes BOE President Michele Lenhard saying, "We needed to wait and listen to the community further before taking away the right of the public to vote on that."

Concerns of losing the non-partisan nature of Ridgewood elections to the bigger races was also a factor, she told The Ridgewood News.

If 15 percent of taxpayers sign their names to a petition, the move could take place. The same is true if the council decides to move the elections, though it seems doubtful given the council can presently cut a defeated budget. If elections moved to November, the council would not have that power.

Other districts, including neighboring .

If boards vote to move elections – which could come at a savings around $42,000 – they're locked in for four years. The Ridgewood school board could still change its mind, according to The Ridgewood News article, though nominating petitions for the upcoming April election all but guarantee it won't happen in 2012.

The seats of Hutton and newcomer Vince Loncto – who took over for Charlie Reilly after his resignation in the fall – are up in April.

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