The overall spirit of the school community in Brielle, on Thursday morning, could not have been any higher.
“Kids, teachers — are really happy, really happy,” said Brielle Elementary School Superintendent Christine Carlson.
“We are having our custodian put a sign in front of the school,” said Mrs. Carlson, thanking the voters for passing the budget.
According to unofficial results, the 2011-2012 school budget for Brielle passed — 538 to 362.
The budget totals $12,734,869, which also includes debt service, is slightly more than the current school year’s $12,347,163 budget.
The now approved 2011-2012 budget will raise $12,147,081, or 95 percent of the total budget, through local taxation.
Under the 2011-2012 school year spending plan, the tax rate will be 72.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, a tax rate increase of 1.3 cents over the current year’s budget.
The 2010-2011 tax rate for school purposes was 70.9 cents per $100 of valuation.
The average price of a home in Brielle is approximately $750,000. On that home, the tax increase for the upcoming school year will be approximately $100, based on total Brielle property valuations of $1,684,327,233.
The same homeowner will pay a total of $5,407 in taxes for school purposes.
A home assessed at $500,000 will see an annual tax increase of $65, or about $5.42 a month; a home assessed at $800,000 would see an annual tax increase of $104, or $8.67 a month; and a home assessed at $1,000,000 will see a $130 annual increase, or $10.84 a month.
Additionally, residents cast their votes on Wednesday for the available three, 3-year board of education seats.
According to unofficial results, incumbent Tedd Vitale and newcomer Eliot Arlo Colon, along with write-in candidate Magdalis “Madaly” Jones will likely be sworn into those seats at the board’s reorganization meeting set for Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Mr. Vitale and Mr. Colon were the only two candidates to file for the seats, which were left open by the expired terms of Mr. Vitale, Kevin Roddy and Ray Shea.
Mr. Vitale, according to the results, received 624 votes. Mr. Colon received 575 votes.
According to the results, Ms. Jones, who sparked a write-in campaign for the open third seat — received 89 votes.
Kevin Roddy, a current board members who did not seek re-election, received 43 write-in votes.
Brielle Elementary School Business Administrator and school board secretary Ed McManus said, “My understanding is I will not receive certified results until Monday or Tuesday.”
“But upon certification from the clerk of elections, the third candidate will be the one who receives the most votes, which so far had been Mrs. Jones,” he said.
Last April, the school’s budget failed in the election, and, a second budget question calling an additional $420,673 to provide extra funding to support 5.5 instructors and extracurricular activities also failed.
The BOE restored some cut programs through specially designated enterprise funds, which allowed the district to set aside money for the programs in profit-generating accounts.
An array of extracurricular and sports-related activities and school programs were also reinstated through a “pay-to-participate” policy.
Last year, the school district cut 23 teacher and teacher aid positions due to financial constraints, causing an increase in classroom sizes.
Mrs. Carlson was very pleased this morning with the budget results.
“The numbers were resounding,” said Mrs. Carlson.
“We are really excited to have full day kindergarten,” added Mrs. Carlson, with funding from state aid.
“We are so happy that at every voting poll, people came out in strong numbers to give their opinion — in strong support of our schools,” she said, on Thursday morning.
Mrs. Carlson said she was pleased with Mr. Vitale returning to his seat, having Mr. Colon on board, and, with working with Mrs. Jones, if she indeed received the most write-in votes and accepts the position with the board.
“The candidates are outstanding,” said Mrs. Carlson.
“Tedd has been a great leader and Mr. Colon has served on our education foundation and is a committed member to our school,” she said.
“And, I look forward to working with Ms. Jones as a new board member — and moving forward,” said Mrs. Carlson.
Because the budget passed, Mrs. Carlson said no further positions will be lost at the school, though the school had to cut some — including one custodian; one full-time and one part-time elementary school staff position; and one full-time and one part-time teacher assistant position — to create a budget under the 2 percent cap mandated by the state.
“There are some losses, but that will be it,” she said.
“I think it was a very proud day for Brielle, and exciting to me personally,” added Mr. Colon, on Thursday morning.
Mr. Vitale and Ms. Jones were not immediately available for comment.
Please see the May 5 edition of The Coast Star for the full story.
On Wednesday, April 27, two candidates are running for the three, three year available seats for the Brielle Board of Education.
In addition to voting on the budget, residents will vote for the school board candidates, which include incumbent school board member Tedd Vitale, 51, of Shore Drive, and newcomer Eliot Arlo Colon, 41, of Locust Road.
Barring a successful write-in campaign on school election day, Mr. Vitale and Mr. Colon will both be elected.
While Mr. Vitale is seeking re-election to his seat, school board members Kevin Roddy and Raymond Shea, whose terms will expire, did not file for re-election.
If Mr. Vitale is re-elected, this will be his third, three-year term on the school board, where he currently chairs the BOE’s finance committee.
Mr. Vitale has lived in Brielle since 1998.
He is married to Terre, 41.
The couple has two children, Nicolas, 11, and Isabella, 9, who are Brielle Elementary School students.
Mr. Vitale, who grew up in Spring Lake Heights and attended Manasquan High School, earned a bachelor of science degree in accounting from Fordham University, New York City, in 1981.
He earned a master’s degree in taxation, also from Fordham University, in 1993.
Mr. Vitale is a licensed certified public accountant [CPA], specializing in taxation.
In addition to having served on the BOE — both as a member and as past president — Mr. Vitale has also been active in his local community in many other ways, including serving as treasurer for the Manasquan High School Alumni Fund and being involved as a member of Manasquan High School’s Academy of Finance.
Mr. Colon has lived in Brielle for five years.
He is married to Lorene, 36.
The couple has two children, Alexander, 7, and Daniel, 6, who attend Brielle Elementary School.
Mr. Colon is a 1992 graduate of Glassboro State College, now Rowan University, in Glassboro, where he earned a bachelor of arts degree in finance.
He later took classes toward a master’s degree in business administration, at Montclair University.
In 2000, Mr. Colon said he started a company, Miro Consulting, located in Woodbridge.
Mr. Colon is president of Miro Consulting, which specializes in software licensing.
Mr. Colon was a NJBIZ Executive of the Year Finalist for 2010 and Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist 2007-2010.
NJBIZ magazine has also named Miro Consulting one of New Jersey’s Finest Companies for 2010.
In the Brielle community, Mr. Colon has been active coaching T-ball, flag football and soccer.
He has also been an active member of the Brielle Education Foundation [BEF] and Manasquan River Yacht Club.
Mr. Colon said his wife is also a Cub Scout den leader, in Brielle, and is an active member of the Brielle PTO.
The third seat will go to a write-in candidate, if there is one, who receives the highest number of votes.
In Brielle, resident Magdalis Rodriguez Jones, who is known as “Madaly” to many in the community, is hoping to get enough write-ins on election day to win the third seat.
Mrs. Jones, 45, resides on Park Avenue in Brielle with her husband, Jay Jones, and their three children — Isabel, 9, Joshua, 4, and Jonathan, 19 months.
Mrs. Jones is a member of Christ Church, in Howell, where she serves as a teacher in the Children’s Ministry.
Mrs. Jones attended Montclair State College [now Montclair State University], where she earned a bachelor of arts degree in home economics, with a concentration in fashion studies.
She subsequently worked in New York City in the textile industry, she said.
Mrs. Jones said she decided to go back to school, where she earned a teaching license through a master’s program from St. Peter’s College, in Jersey City.
Her specific concentration was education, administration and supervision, she said.
Mrs. Jones said she worked with students in grades kindergarten through four, and also served a classroom teacher.
She was also a lead science teacher, said Mrs. Jones.
Because she is hoping to run as a write-in candidate, Mrs. Jones’ name will not formally appear on the ballot.
Mrs. Jones said in order for her vote to be counted, voters must type in her name as “Magdalis Rodriguez Jones” on April 27.
Polls will be open between 2 and 9 p.m.
Don’t forget — Brielle Cub Scouts will be hosting their annual spaghetti dinner this Saturday evening, April 9, at the Brielle Firehouse, on the corner of Longstreet and Cardeza avenues.
The event will be held from 4 to 7 p.m., or, when supplies run out.
Dinner will include salad, main course, dessert and soda.
The cost is $7 for a child under 12 and $9 for all others.
Tickets may be purchased from any Cub Scout or by calling 732-259-5793.
Limited number of tickets can be purchased at the door for $2 more.
The Borough of Brielle will be hosting a Shredder Day on Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.Residents can feel confident that their papers, such as confidential documents and the like, will be shredded properly and disposed of.
This year, Manasquan residents will be invited to come to Brielle’s Shredder Day.
“Come one, come all,” said Councilwoman Ann Scott.
“And, happy shredding,” she said.
More information on Shredder Day will also be posted on the borough’s website, http://www.briellenj.com.
Woman’s Club of Brielle members [from left] Nancy Erickson and Lucy Sanzalone, who volunteer their time at Brielle Elementary School, recently read to students during a Read Across America Day celebration.
Brielle Parks and Recreation will be hosting sign-ups for Biddy T-Ball.
Games will be held on Sundays, from noon to 1 p.m.
The season will begin in mid-April.
The cost per child is $35.
Each player will receive a t-shirt and cap.
Sign-ups will be held at the Curtis House on Monday, March 21, from 6 to 7 p.m. and Wednesday, March 30, from 7 to 8 p.m.
Applications may be downloaded by visiting briellerec.com.
For more information, please call Stephen Speicher at 732-259-5793.
Local resident Mary Haus recently caught a seal soaking up some rays off of her neighbor’s dock, along side the Manasquan River.