Voters approve budget, elect two new board members

Residents of the Bethlehem Central School District have overwhelmingly approved a $102.7 million budget for the 2022-23 school year by a margin of 3853 to 805, or approximately 83% in favor to 17% opposed.

Voters also elected two candidates to serve on the Bethlehem Central Board of Education, Robert Tietjen and John Walston. There were four candidates on the ballot:

  • Tamara A. Starr received 2,146 votes
  • John Walston received 2,592 votes*
  • Robert Tietjen received 3,072 votes*
  • Douglas Lloyd received 812 votes

*Robert Tietjen and John Walston have been elected to serve three-year terms beginning July 1, 2022. Both are first-time members of the BC Board of Education.

Two other propositions were also approved by district voters:

  • Bus purchase proposition (77% approval – 3,577 yes; 1,069 no)
  • Capital reserve proposition (84% approval – 3,862 yes; 742 no)

“Our mission as a school district is to help all students reach their potential,” said Superintendent Monroe. “Passage of this budget will help us deliver on that mission with added supports for students in areas of academics, character, community and wellness.”

Monroe said turnout for the annual budget vote was greater than expected, driven in large part by a four-way race for two open board seats. A total of 4,714 residents participated in today’s vote.

“At BC, we talk a lot about the value of community. Nothing says community more than people willing to spend time in a voting line — one that often stretched all the way out to the street — in order to cast their votes. You can bet our students were watching and learning this important civics lesson.”

Tonight’s results are unofficial. Vote totals will be certified on Wednesday.