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A preview of school elections in Erie County

Voters in every Western New York community outside of Buffalo will head to the voting booth Tuesday to consider school budgets, school board candidates and propositions ranging from downsizing boards to authorizing spending on buses.

The following capsules include the financial information voters can use to see how their money would be spent. All figures related to tax rates and tax bills are estimates, either provided by school officials, or calculated based on information they provided.

Akron

Candidates (Elect 2): Daniel Caprio (i).

Total budget: $28.3 million, down 2.36 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.02.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $8.9 million, up 3.02 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $15.68 for Newstead, down 1.26 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,505.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 31.74 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 47.8.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in Akron High School orange gym , 47 Bloomingdale Ave.

Web link: www.akronschools.org.

Voters will consider a $28.3 million budget that would decrease spending by $683,378 over the current budget.

Only one candidate filed for two seats on the seven-member School Board. Incumbent board President Daniel Caprio, an employee of Strippit Inc., is seeking another three-year term. Incumbent Jodi Brege is not running.

The second seat might be filled by a write-in vote or a board appointment at its July reorganization meeting.

***

Alden

Candidates (Elect 1): Zack Salim.

Total budget: $32.1 million, up 0.87 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.24 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $14.1 million, up 3.24 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $36.81 in Alden, up 2.1 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,877.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 44 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 39.5 percent.

Proposition 2: Spend $444,000 from the district's bus reserve fund on three 66-passenger buses and two 30-passenger buses.

Proposition 3: Establish a new capital reserve fund to be used to fund the purchase of school buses, other vehicles, equipment and supplies in the Transportation Department, at an amount not to exceed $900,000.

Proposition 4: Establish a new capital reserve fund for facilities, equipment and technology, not to exceed $3 million.

Proposition 5: Spend $45,000 from the district's buildings and grounds equipment capital reserve fund to purchase a pickup truck with a plow and equipment trailer.

Polls open: 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Alden High School gym, 13190 Park St.

Web link: www.alden.wnyric.org

Voters will consider a $32.1 million budget for 2012-13 that would raise spending by less than 1 percent.

Zack Salim, 46, a newcomer, is unopposed for a School Board seat.

***

Amherst

Candidates (Elect 3): Jeanne Ernst, James Gramkee, Paul Steimle (i) and David Stocking (i).

Total budget: $4 7/1 4 million, up 1.18 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.42 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $30,998,978, up 2.18 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $20.36 for Amherst, up 3.42 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $2,036.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 67 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 17 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Amherst High School, 4301 Main St.

Web link: amherstschools.org

Voters will consider a $47.7 million budget that would increase spending by $557,980 over the current budget.

Voters also will elect three people to the seven-member School Board. There are four candidates running for three seats, each of which carries a three-year term:

Jeanne Ernst, 45, is mounting her first election bid. A former PTA president, she worked in the financial sector before becoming a stay-at-home mom.

James Gramkee, 54, is chief financial officer at International Fiber Corp.

Paul Steimle, 43, is running for re-election to the seat he won as a write-in candidate in 2009. He is a senior managing consultant for Paradigm Tax Group.

David Stocking, 55, is the current School Board vice president, an office to which he was elected in 2004. He is director of programs for Moog Inc. Industrial Group.

***

Clarence

Candidates (Elect 2): Susan C. Altman (i), Michael Fuchs, John Semler (i).

Total budget: $72.5 million, up 2.65 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.24 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $40.4 million, up 2.24 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $14.35, up 1.4 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,435.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 55 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 28 percent.

Proposition 2: Purchase nine new school buses for an amount not to exceed $995,000.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Clarence High School gym, 9625 Main St.

Web link: www.clarenceschools.org

Voters will consider a $72.5 million budget that would increase spending by 2.65 percent over the current budget. The spending plan stays within the property tax cap levy limit and calls for spending cuts of $2.45 million, including eliminating more than 30 jobs.

Voters also will elect two members to the seven-member School Board. Three candidates are running for two seats:

Susan C. Altman, 51, who is seeking election to a third term. She volunteers at Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church as supervisor of collections counting.

Michael Fuchs, 39, seeking election to his first term on the board. He has worked for Rich Products Corp. for the past 16 years.

Jack Semler, 59, is an incumbent seeking election to a third consecutive term. He also was on the board for three terms from 1996 to 2005. Semler is chief technology officer for SmartPill Corp., leading its R&D and clinical research activities.

***

Cheektowaga

Candidates (Elect 1): Paul Nazzarett Jr. (i).

Total budget: $39.1 million, up 1 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.8 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $21,795,404, up 2.8 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $27.64, up 2.8 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,710.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 56 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 31 percent.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in the band room of Cheektowaga Central High School, 3600 Union Road.

Web link: www.cheektowagacentral.org

Residents will consider a $39.1 million budget for 2012-2013 that includes across-the-board staff cuts.

The budget is an increase of over this year's spending plan of $341,445 and will increase the tax rate by 2.8 percent. School Superintendent Dennis Kane attributed the tax increase and staff cuts to the end of stimulus funding, the tax cap and rising costs for health insurance, salaries and pensions. Class size has also been increased, Kane said.

Paul Nazzarett Jr. 45, a Cheektowaga police officer, is unopposed in his bid for a second five-year term.

***

Cheektowaga Sloan

Candidates (Elect 1): Gary Sieczkarek.

Total budget: $33.26 million, up 0.75 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 1.25 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $15.33 million, up 1.25 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $54.54 for Cheektowaga, up 1.24 percent; $75.11 for West Seneca, up 1.25 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $3,380.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 46 percent.

Percent of budget from state aid: 39 percent.

Proposition 2: Increase the transportation distance limits for kindergarten through eighth grade to one half-mile and to 1 mile for high schoolers.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in John F. Kennedy High School gym, 305 Cayuga Creek Road.

Web link: www.sloanschools.org.

A resident's petition has resulted in a proposition being placed on the ballot to increase the limits for transportation to school.

The petition asks voters to increase the distance children live from school in order to receive free district transportation. Currently, all district students are bused. After deducting school transportation aid, the district would save about $14,000, Superintendent James P. Mazgajewski said.

Residents also will be voting on a proposed budget that increases spending less than 1 percent. The superintendent said the small increase is due to the wage freeze that teachers and other staff approved.

Board President Gary Sieczkarek, 61, is unopposed.

***

Cleveland Hill

Candidates (Elect 2): Thomas S. Kulaszewski (i) and Mary E. Metzger (i).

Total budget: $29.7 million, up 2.49 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.36 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $11.8 million, up 1.5 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $44.46, Cheektowaga.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $2,757.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 39.6 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 40.9 percent.

There are no propositions on the ballot.

Polls open: noon to 9 p.m., Cleveland Hill High School auditorium foyer, 105 Mapleview Road, Cheektowaga.

Web link: www.clevehill.wnyric.org/

Voters will decide the fate of a $29.7 million budget for 2012-13 that increases spending by almost $723,000, or 2.49 percent, over the budget for the current school year.

The rise in spending primarily is driven by a $200,000 allocation to the district's technology fund to help pay for the second phase of a project that includes computer upgrades in the schools and a $100,000 transfer into the district's capital fund.

Voters also will re-elect incumbents Thomas S. Kulaszewski and Mary E. Metzger to the school board. They are unopposed.

***

Depew

Candidates (Elect 2): David Sheff (i), Patrick Law (i), Steven Karnyski, Andrea O'Hern and Justin P. Young.

Total budget: $37.4 million, down 1.16 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.67 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $16.1 million, up 1.73 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $21.07 for Lancaster; $33.98 for Cheektowaga, up 2.82 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $2,107.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 43.04 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 42.01 percent.

Proposition 2: Use $380,338 from the vehicle reserve fund to buy three 66-passenger buses and one 28-passenger bus that includes capacity for three wheelchairs.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in Cayuga Heights Elementary School library, 1780 Como Park Blvd.

Web link: www.depewschools.org

Voters will consider a $37.4 million budget that would decrease spending by $439,572 over the current budget.

Voters also will elect two to the seven-member School Board. Five candidates are seeking the three-year terms.

Incumbent David Sheff, a human resources executive with Pcb Group, is seeking a second term.

Seeking a full three-year term is incumbent Patrick Law, a labor and employee relations specialist with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, who was appointed by the board in October to fill a vacancy.

The other three candidates are Steven Karnyski, a sales engineer with Mirion Technologies; Andrea O'Hern, a child care director; and Justin P. Young, a teacher at Batavia Middle School.

***

East Aurora

Candidates (Elect 2): MaryBeth Covert (i), Dennis Holbrook (i), Kenneth A. Horton, Kimberlee L. Danieu and William F. Kane Jr.

Total budget: $29.11 million, up by 4.44 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.45 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $17.4 million, up by 3.45 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $35.98 for Aurora, up by $1.20.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,511.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 59.8 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 26.5 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Middle School, 430 Main St.

Web link: www.eastauroraschools.org.

Voters will consider a $29.11 million budget that increases spending by 4.44 percent but cuts 11.1 teaching jobs districtwide and may alter the high school schedule to seven class periods in a day and limit the elective offerings.

Voters also will elect two board members from a field of five candidates running for the seven-member board. The seats carry three-year terms. The candidates are:

MaryBeth Covert, 45, an attorney working for the Federal Public Defender's Office, Western District of New York. She is seeking re-election to a third term.

Incumbent Dennis Holbrook, 59, seeking re-election to a fourth term. He has completed nine years on the board. He is an attorney and executive vice president of Norse Energy, a natural gas drilling company.

Kimberlee L. Danieu, 46, a newcomer and an attorney but has stepped back from practicing law to have more time for her family and to do community service.

Kenneth A. Horton, 50, vice president and partner at Probe Services Professional Investigations.

William F. Kane Jr., 62, an investigator with the Drug Enforcement Administration.

***

Eden

Candidates (Elect 3): Scott Henderson, Michael M. Byrnes, Barbara Henry, Robert. J. Reed.

Total budget: $25.18 million, down 3.75 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.94 percent.

Tax levy (Total amount to be raised through property taxes): $12,789,401, up 2 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 assessed value: $28.27 for Eden, up an estimated 2 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,951.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 50.79 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 38.16 percent.

Polls open: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Junior/Senior High School, 3150 Schoolview Road, Eden

Web link: www.edencsd.org/Page/2407

Voters will consider a $25.18 million budget for 2012-2013 that is a reduction in spending over this year's plan of 3.7 percent. No layoffs were anticipated under the budget, but Finance Director Lisa Almasi said cuts were made to lines for substitute teachers, equipment repair and the unemployment budget.

Four candidates are vying for three seats on the board. Two of those seats were left vacant by the resignations earlier this year of board members, Patrick Howard and Brian Burgstahler, who said they resigned due to division on the School Board.

The four candidates, none of whom are incumbents, are:

Scott Henderson, 48. Henderson is an engineer and said he would focus on all sides of an issue and will try and make informed decisions so that everyone benefits: children, teachers and taxpayers. His own children still attend Eden schools.

JMichael M. Byrnes, 25, who is making his third run for the board. He is the owner of MB Horse Stables. Byrnes said his biggest concern is the budget.

Barbara Henry, 53, is married and the mother of two children. She and her husband Martin own a fresh cut flower shop. Henry said she is running for the school board because she is passionate about kids.

Robert J. Reed, 63, is also running, but the News was not able to reach him for comment.:

***

Frontier

Candidates (Elect 2): Thomas M. Best Jr. and Patrick T. Boyle.

Total budget: $72.28 million, down by 3.1 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.7 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $33.77 million, up 2.7 percent.

Property tax rates per $1,000 of assessed value: $24.47 for Hamburg, up 2.19 percent; $21.64 for Eden, up 2.19 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,493.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 46.7 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 38.3 percent.

Proposition 2: $896,090 for purchase of eight school buses and a one-ton dump truck for grounds maintenance.

Proposition 3: Downsize the School Board from nine members to seven members.

Proposition 4: Appoint a nonvoting high school student to serve on the School Board.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Blasdell Elementary School, 3780 South Park Ave.; Cloverbank Elementary School, 2761 Cloverbank Road, Hamburg; Pinehurst Elementary, 6050 Fairway Court, Lakeview; Frontier High School, 4432 Bay View Road, Hamburg; and Woodlawn Fire Hall, 3281 Lake Shore Road, Woodlawn.

Web link: www.frontier.wnyric.org.

Voters will be asked to approve a $72.28 million budget that calls for a 2.19 percent tax rate increase and decreases spending by 3.1 percent.

To help close budget gaps, the district expects to cut the full-time equivalent of 29.1 jobs, down from the original 39.5 projection.

Voters will see two new faces on the School Board with the uncontested election of two newcomers: Thomas M. Best Jr., a detective sergeant with the Hamburg Police Department; and Patrick T. Boyle, general manager of information services for National Fuel.

***

Grand Island

Candidates (Elect 3): David Goris (i), Glenn Bobeck (i), Joan Droit (i).

Total budget: $53.1 million, up 2.4 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.25 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $29.2 million, up 3.25 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $40.79, up 2.4 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,897.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 55 percent.

Percent of budget from state aid: 28 percent.

Proposition 2: Spend $575,500 on three 66-passenger buses, two small special-education buses, two trucks with plows and one trailer mount aerial lift.

Polls open: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Grand Island High School gym, 1100 Ransom Road.

Web link: www.k12.ginet.org

Voters will consider a $53.1 million budget that would increase spending by $1,220,710 over the current budget.

Three incumbents are unopposed for three-year terms. They are: board President David Goris, attorney Glenn Bobeck and Joan Droit, a retired teacher.

***

Hamburg

Candidates (Elect 3): Sally Stephenson, Patricia Brunner-Collins (i), Ginger I. Taylor, Laura Heeter, Tracy O'Connor Robillard, Robert P. Madden (i) John E. Maurer, Dr. Joan G. Calkins (i).

Total budget: $56.59 million, down 0.31 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 4.35 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $31.8 million, up 4.35 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: Hamburg, $32.08, up 4.14 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,957.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 56 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 34 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the high school, 4111 Legion Drive.

Web link: www.hamburgschools.org.

School officials said the loss of $1.2 million in federal jobs revenue, a limited amount of fund balance available to appropriate, together with the constraints of the property tax levy cap created a budget development process that was particularly difficult.

Spending is down slightly in the proposed budget. The budget cuts 18 teaching positions and 16 staff positions, through layoffs and retirements, and reduces extracurricular activities, BOCES services and substitute teacher days. There is a $50,000 cut in athletics, but officials said that could be offset by fundraising by the booster club.

Eight candidates are seeking three three-year seats on the board:

Patricia Brunner-Collins, 47, a nurse who is currently a stay-at-home mother and board vice president.

Joan G. Calkins, 59, pediatrician/pediatric rheumatologist and current board president.

Laura Heeter, 42, a former sixth-grade teacher, religious education teacher, and parent advocate in special-education meetings.

Robert P. Madden, 51, vice president of First Niagara Benefits Consulting. He was appointed to the board six months ago.

John E. Maurer, 44, co-owner and vice president of Sotek/Belrix Industries, a manufacturer of precision metal stampings in Hamburg.

Tracy O'Connor Robillard, 40, French and Spanish teacher at North Collins High School.

Sally Stephenson, 61, a registered nurse and administrator of health services at Erie Community College South Campus.

Ginger I. Taylor, 39, administrative assistant at Therapeutic Link for Children.

***

Holland

Candidates (Elect 1): Scott Wander, Taina Armstrong Hoffman.

Total budget: $17 million, down 5.6 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 0.42 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $6.6 million, up 2 percent.

Property tax rates per $1,000 of assessed value: $13.57, up 2 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,302.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 39.1 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 49.7 percent.

Proposition 2: Purchase of two 34-passenger vans for a total cost of $100,000.

Proposition 3: Reduce School Board size from seven seats to five.

Proposition 4: Change election process of board candidates running for specific seats to at-large election.

Polls open: 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Holland High School auditorium foyer, Canada Street.

Web link: www.holland.wnyric.org

Residents will vote on a $17 million spending plan that will exceed the 0.42 percent tax cap, even though the budget is $1 million lower than the current year.

Voters will also choose a new School Board member. Taina Armstrong Hoffmann, who lost a tight race for a board seat last year, is running against newcomer Scott Wander. They are vying for the seat currently occupied by Stephen Welk.

Armstrong Hoffman operates two small businesses with her husband.

Wander, 37, is an emergency medical services director based out of Erie County Medical Center and a Holland Central School graduate.

***

Iroquois

Candidates (Elect 1): Michele Hovey.

Total budget: $43.5 million, up 4.0 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 5.3 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $25.5 million, up 3.42 percent.

Property tax rates per $1,000 of assessed value: $16.39, up 3.4 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,639.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 58.7 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 29.4 percent.

Proposition 2: Purchase three (62-passenger) buses at a maximum cost of $360,000.

Proposition 3: Expend $60,000 from the district's Technology Reserve Fund and transfer no more than $450,000 from the unappropriated fund balance to the Repair Reserve Fund.

Polls open: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Iroquois Intermediate gymnasium, Girdle Road, Elma.

Web link: www.iroquoiscsd.org

Residents will decide on a $43.5 million budget that carries a tax levy increase of 3.42 percent.

The spending plan returns modified sports to the budget, which were cut last year and allows for the continuation of all current extracurricular programs.

A transportation proposal will also appear on the ballot. A separate proposition asking voters to approve the expenditure of funds for computer hardware and software, and the transfer of funds into a repair reserve fund will also be put before voters.

Michele Hovey is unopposed for the seat being vacated by Susan Brunner.

***

Kenmore-Tonawanda

Candidates (Elect 1): Stephen Brooks (i) and Susan Sperrazza.

Total budget: $147,776,616 million, up 0.37 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: $73,853,924 should be in percentage.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $72,269,837, down 5.88 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $43.19, up 4.97 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $2,030.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 49 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 32 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Philip Sheridan building, 3200 Elmwood Ave.; Herbert Hoover School, 249 Thorncliff Road; and Kenmore East High School, 350 Fries Road.

Web link: www.kenton.k12.ny.us

Voters already approved two propositions that impacted the $147.7 million budget, agreeing to sell a former elementary school and extend the qualifying distances for student busing.

But a total of 75 jobs -- 47 instructional and 28 non-instructional -- were cut as district officials dug out of an almost $12.5 million hole. Sports programs took a hit, through elimination or combination.

Also on the ballot is a race for a three-year term on the School Board. The candidates are:

Incumbent Stephen Brooks, 52, a financial adviser seeking election to a second term.

Susan Sperrazza, 31, a newcomer and stay-at-home mother who previously was employed as a school social worker in a neighboring district.

***

Lackawanna

Candidates (Elect 3): Leonard F. Kowalski, Mark E. Kowalski, John W. Makeyenko (i), Maureen Murphy Gambino (i) and Robert C. Sireika.

Total budget: $45.3 million.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.2 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $8.59 million, up 2 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $10.83, up 1.76 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home: $1,083.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 19 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 63.1 percent.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m.

Polling sites: First Ward, Bocce Court, 175 Madison St.; Second Ward, Queen of Angels Hall at St. Michael Church, 144 Warsaw St.; Third Ward, McKinley School, 245 South Shore Boulevard; and Fourth Ward, Lackawanna Senior High School, 550 Martin Road.

Web link: www.lackawannaschools.org

Voters are being asked to approve a budget for 2012-2013 that would increase spending by $670,000 over the current budget of $44.63 million. Three board members also will be elected to the seven-mmeber school board.

Five people are seeking the three-year seats, which will go to the three highest vote getters. The candidates are:

Leonard Kowalski, 34, distribution engineer with the Erie County Water Authority.

Mark E. Kowalski, 32, a Lackawanna police officer.

John Makeyenko, 47, who serves as president of the Lackawanna School Board and also was on the board from 1996 to 2003 and from 2004 to 2007.

Maureen Murphy-Gambino, 56, who was appointed in 2010 to serve the rest of the term of a departed board member and won election last May. Murphy-Gambino works as secretary to Lackawanna Mayor Geoffrey Szymanski.

Robert C. Sireika, 30, who is on the maintenance staff of the Lackawanna Municipal Housing Authority and owns his own rental properties.

***

Lake Shore

Candidates (Elect 2): Richard A. Vogan (i), Jennifer Wackowski (i) and Kenneth West.

Total budget: $52.75 million, up 2.87 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 4.76 percent.

Tax levy (Total amount to be raised through property taxes): $15,909,912, up 1.88 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $16.78 for Evans, up 1.9 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,678.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 30.2.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 49.3.

Proposition 2: Spend $823,889 for five full-size Blue Bird school buses, one 30-passenger school bus, two wheelchair school buses, one plow truck and one service truck.

Polls open: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Senior High School lobby, 959 Beach Road, Angola.

Web link: www.lakeshore.wnyric.org.

A loss of more than a half-million dollars in federal stimulus money, combined with rising pension costs and debt service, has district spending going up nearly 3 percent next year, school officials said.

At the same time, the district chopped about 10 instructional positions, due to enrollment decline and class sizes. The budget also axed the foreign language program for sixth-graders.

Keep an eye on Proposition 2. Lake Shore voters turned down bus purchases last May and again in March, when the district put up this same proposal for referendum.

Three candidates are running for two, three-year seats on the School Board. They are:

Richard A. Vogan, 59. The nine-year veteran of the Lake Shore School Board is also serving his second term as president of the Erie County Association of School Boards.

Jennifer Wackowski, 40, a two-term member of the Lake Shore School Board.

Kenneth West, 44, a Derby parent and volunteer firefighter.

***

Lancaster

Candidates (Elect 2): Wendy Buchert (i) and Kimberly Nowak.

Total budget: $91.5 million, up 4.47 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.76 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $44.5 million, up 1.88 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $16.12 for Lancaster, up 1.51 percent; $25.99 for Cheektowaga, up 1.48 percent; $340.92 for Elma, up 1.47 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,612.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 48.6 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 30.9 percent.

Proposition 2: A $19.5 million capital project to address health and safety needs at 10 buildings in the district.

Proposition 3: Spend $1.2 million from school bus reserve fund to buy seven 65-passenger replacement buses and six 29-passenger replacement buses.

Proposition 4: Establish a new school bus reserve fund, for the purpose of buying school buses, for up to $9 million over a 10-year period.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Lancaster High School, One Forton Drive.

Web link: www.lancasterschools.org

Voters will decide the fate of a $91.5 million budget for 2012-13 that increases spending by $3.9 million, or 4.47 percent, over the budget for the current school year.

The proposed budget raises the tax levy, the total amount to be raised in property taxes, by 1.88 percent over the 2011-12 school year, well within the 3.76 percent increase allowed under the state tax cap.

The increase in spending primarily is driven by increased costs for employee salaries and benefits, while the district would lay off three teachers in response to declining enrollment at the elementary-school level and in an effort to cut costs.

Voters also will elect two people who are unopposed for three-year terms on the seven-member School Board:

Wendy Buchert, 44, an incumbent, is seeking election to a second term.

Kimberly Nowak, 47, a newcomer, who is running for the seat currently held by board President David Zalenski, who is not seeking re-election.

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Maryvale

Candidates (Elect 1): Margaret J. Bourdette (i).

Total budget: $35.89 million, up 0.99 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.63 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $18.47 million, up 2.63 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $29.81 to $29.96, up 2.12 percent to 2.63 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,848 to $1,858.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 51.48 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 36.49 percent.

Proposition 2: Spend up to $100,000 to replace a hot water heater and replace exterior stairs and railings at the 9-10 building.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in the gym of the Robert A. Binner Educational Center (formerly 9-10 building), 1050 Maryvale Drive.

Web link: www.maryvale.wnyric.org.

Voters will consider a budget that cuts several teacher and staff positions and increases spending by just under 1 percent.

The tax levy would go up 2.12 percent, which is lower than the 2.63 percent tax cap allowed under state law.

Residents also will vote on a second proposition that would spend up to $100,000 of money left over in this year's budget for some minor capital projects at the 9-10 building.

Board President Margaret J. Bourdette is unopposed.

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North Collins

Candidates (Elect 2): David Gier (i), Paulette Renaldo (i), and Lisa Petrus.

Total budget: $14.39 million, down 1.95 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.37 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $4,881,423, up 3.37 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $20.74, up 3.37 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $2,074.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 33.9 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 47.4 percent.

Proposition 2: Purchase two school for not more than $200,000.

Polls open: Noon to 9 p.m. in the gymnasium of the North Collins Junior/Senior High School, 2045 School Street.

Web link: www.northcollins.com

Voters will consider a $14.39 million budget that cuts spending by 1.95 percent.

Three candidates are seeking two five year terms on the school board. They are:

Incumbent Paulette Renaldo, 43, a project coordinator, who is running for a second term.

Incumbent David Gier, who could not be reached.

Lisa Petrus, 43, who could not be reached.

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Orchard Park

Candidates (Elect 2): Alfred McClymonds (i) and Elizabeth D. Quinlan.

Total budget: $83.64 million, up 1.99 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.68 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $53.07 million, up 3.67 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $31.22 for Orchard Park, up 2.99 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,811.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 63 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 25 percent.

Proposition 2: Spend up to $680,000 to purchase six buses and two wheelchair van-buses.

Polls open: 7 a.m to 9 p.m. in the high school gym, 4040 Baker Road. Use the Freeman Road entrance.

Web link: www.opschools.org

Payments to the retirement system increased more than a half million dollars, while workers' compensation insurance payments are going up close to $200,000.

While costs are going up, the district's state aid increased less than 1 percent. The district plans to return some items that were cut to balance the budget this year. The gifted and talented program in the elementary and middle schools will be partially restored, and the part-time athletic director's position will be reinstated to full time.

The budget eliminates five teacher's aide positions and four elementary teaching positions, although there is a net increase of 3.9 teaching positions throughout the district.

Incumbent board member Carla Marrazzo decided not to seek re-election. Two candidates are unopposed for board seats. They are Alfred McClymonds, 70, the current board president, and Elizabeth Quinlan, 43, a substitute teacher.

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Springville

Candidates (Elect 1): Kara Kane.

Total budget: $33.88 million, down $2.2 million, or 6.3 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.79 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $14.56 million, up 2.39 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: Colden, $36.98 per $1,000 up 2.35 percent; Concord, $36.19 per $1,000, up 2.34 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,701.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 42.9 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 45 percent percent.

Proposition 2: Spend up to $400,000 to purchase four buses and accompanying radios and cameras.

Proposition 3: Reduce the number of seats on the board from seven to five.

Polls open: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the high school library media center, 290 N. Buffalo St., Springville; Colden Elementary gym, 8263 Boston Colden Road, Colden; and Collins Center Fire Hall, Route 39, Collins Center.

Web link: www.springvillegi.org.

Spending would go down by more than $2 million, due in large measure to the reduction of 34 faculty and staff members -- nearly 10 percent of the district's workforce.

"The philosophy is this year let's do whatever we can to preserve programs for kids while we right-size," Superintendent Paul M. Connelly said, adding that enrollment is down from several years ago.

One candidate is unopposed for a three-year term on the School Board. She is Kara Kane, 33, director of communications at Medaille College. She is running for the seat held by her husband, Jeremiah Kane, who is not seeking re-election.

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Sweet Home

Candidates (Elect 2): Douglas J. Galli (i), Marianne Jansen (i), Jack I. Reich.

Total budget: $67.3 million, up 0.01 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.87 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $1.01 million, up 2.78 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $14.33 for Amherst, up 0.37 percent; $30.68 for Tonawanda, up 0.62 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,433.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 55.5 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 29 percent.

Proposition 2: To authorize the spending of $442,000 for four school buses.

Proposition 3: $645,000 for an EXCEL project to improve the district's technology and telephone infrastructures, funding to be covered by the state.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Norman C. Vergils Community Center at Sweet Home High School, 1901 Sweet Home Road, Amherst.

Web link: www.sweethomeschools.com/1213Budget

The $67.3 million budget reins in spending, which would grow by only 0.01 percent. But to contain costs, the district is eliminating the full-time equivalent of 27.6 positions, including 8.1 teachers/administrators and 19 school aides.

Because of declining enrollment, class sizes will not be significantly affected, though middle and high school elective courses and special programs are likely to be reduced under the budget proposal, administrators said.

Voters also will elect two people to the seven-member School Board. Three candidates are running for five-year seats on the board:

Jack I. Reich, 48, is a newcomer who works as a financial consultant and assistant district manager for AXA Advisors.

Marianne Jasen, 52, is the current board president, running for a second term. She works as a nurse at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital.

Douglas J. Galli, 57, is running for a third term. He is vice president of the Retail Division of the Reid Group and has served as past president and past vice president of the board.

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Tonawanda

Candidates (Elect 2): Brenda S. Boyle, Jennifer Mysliwy (i) and Sharon Stuart (i).

Total budget: $29.5 million, down 1.65 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 3.21 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $10.89 million, up 1.93 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $17.35, up 1.69 percent.

Taxes on a $100,000 home (market value): $1,735.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 37 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 52 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Wellness Gym in Tonawanda High/Middle School, 600 Fletcher St.

Web link: www.tonawandacsd.

Residents will decide on a $29.5 million plan that decreases spending by $495,176 under the current budget.

Voters will also elect two people to the seven-member School Board. Three people are running for the open seats, both of which are three-year terms. They are:

Brenda S. Boyle, 53, a newcomer who works as a pharmacy tech at Walgreens and is the executive director of the Tonawanda Youth Board.

Jennifer Mysliwy, current board vice president who is looking for a second three-year term. She works at Musicalfare Theatre and runs her own scrapbooking and paper-crafting business, My Happy Place.

Sharon R. Stuart, 47, current board president who is seeking her second three-year term. Stuart works as an administrative assistant for the Dietrich Funeral Homes.

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West Seneca

Candidates (Elect 2): Mary J. Busse (i), Gwendolyn A. Phillips (i) and Brendon Najm.

Total budget: $108.2 million, up 1.97 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: $52.5 million; 3.26 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $52.5 million, up 3.26 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $37.85 for West Seneca, up 2.33 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,703.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 48.6 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 37.2 percent.

Proposition 2: Spend $368,000 from the Bus Purchase Reserve Fund on eight 22-passenger school buses.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., East Senior High School gymnasium, 4760 Seneca St.

Web link: www.wscschools.org/

West Seneca will allocate nearly $5.8 million of fund balance in the 2012-13 school budget as a way to stay within the new state-mandated tax cap with its $108.2 million spending plan -- an increase of nearly 2 percent over last year.

Employee benefits, by a wide margin, comprised the largest bulge in the budget, increasing by nearly $2.7 million, or 2.5 percent. None of the other expenditures in the district's budget summary showed more than a 0.43 percent increase, and many, like plant operations, instructional administration, transportation and athletics showed budgetary decreases.

The candidates for two three-year seats on the seven-member board are:

Mary J. Busse, 55, a recently retired job coach at West Seneca Developmental Center who now works there part time as a developmental aide. She has served a total of 15 years on the School Board, although not all consecutively.

Gwendolyn A. Phillips, 42, a human resource specialist, is employed as a recruiter at First Niagara. She seeks her second term on the School Board.

Najm, 19, who graduated with honors and advanced designation from West Seneca East in 2010, is a sophomore at Canisius College majoring in political science and urban studies.

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Williamsville

Candidates (Elect 3): Michael Littman (i), Jay Smith, Toni Vazquez.

Total budget: $164.5 million, up 1.69 percent.

Tax levy increase allowed under tax cap: 2.75 percent.

Tax levy (total amount to be raised through property taxes): $106.3 million, up 2.72 percent.

Property tax rate per $1,000 of assessed value: $18.46, up 2.72 percent.

Taxes on $100,000 home (market value): $1,846.

Percentage of budget from property taxes: 64.64 percent.

Percentage of budget from state aid: 19.8 percent.

Polls open: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Williamsville North High School, 1595 Hopkins Road, Amherst

Web link: www.williamsvillek12.org/budget

Voters are being asked to consider a $164.5 million budget that would raise spending by $2.73 million, or 1.69 percent, and raise taxes by 2.72 percent. The budget preserves all core academic and extracurricular activities. Some class sizes would increase.

Voters also will to elect three candidates to the nine-member School Board. The candidates are unopposed for three-year terms.

They are:

Michael Littman, 58, an incumbent and current board president, is seeking election to a third term. He is an associate professor at Buffalo State College and associate chairman of the Business Department.

Toni Vazquez, 44, a candidate who has previously run for a board seat, is a co-owner and office administrator at Urban Family Practice, a Buffalo medical practice.

Jay Smith, 40, is a division general manager at Rural/Metro Medical Services, where he has worked since 2006.