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INTERSCHOLASTIC WINTER SPORTS IN JEOPARDY

Interscholastic sports for the winter are in jeopardy at Starpoint Junior/Senior High School because, in part, some students haven't paid yet to participate in fall sports.

Mark J. Montazzoli, co-president of the Starpoint Sports Boosters, told the School Board on Monday that the boosters still are about $48,000 short because of the students who haven't yet paid the $583 per sport to participate.

He said that the School Board has given his group a Thursday deadline to come up with $82,542 for winter sports. "We've had mailers that went out to the people that were in arrears from the fall sports . . . Money's coming in, but its coming in in dribs and drabs."

Montazzoli once again asked the board for $37,406 from the $100,000 it anticipates to receive from Pepsi in return for agreeing to sell only Pepsi products at school functions. Board members as well as School Superintendent C. Douglas Whelan have said that the district also needs to reinstate some academics that were cut.

The district is operating under a 25.3 million contingency plan this year after voters twice defeated budgets.

Board member Jamie Marcolini told the boosters, "I want to personally thank you for the work you all did . . . In a sense its really pulled the community together a bit."

Diane Krebs of Pendleton, whose son played soccer this year, said that she was happy he got the chance to participate.

James Askey of Lockport said that he hoped his child can play basketball in the winter. He added that it is "sad" that some parents whose students sat on the bench during games have chosen not to pay.

e-mail: pkowalik@buffnews.com

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