Skufca, Briggs elected to Lake Placid school board

Lake Placid Central School District stakeholder Chip Bissell fills out his ballot for the district's 2022-23 budget, which passed 487 to 71 on Tuesday. (Enterprise photo — Lauren Yates)

LAKE PLACID — Voters in the Lake Placid Central School District have elected Colleen Skufca and Ron Briggs as the two newest members of the district’s board of education. Voters also approved the district’s proposed $20,911,744 budget for the 2022-23 school year.

This year’s board of education race was the district’s first contested school board election since 2012, according to board Clerk Karen Angelopoulos. Four people — Skufca, Briggs, Douglas Lansing and Beth Brunner — ran for two seats on the board. Current board President Rick Preston and board member Bryan Liam Kennelly chose not to run for reelection.

Skufca, who earned 407 votes, and Briggs, who garnered 224 votes, will fill general vacancies on the board of education; the board will nominate its picks for president and vice president later this year.

Altogether, 566 ballots were cast in Tuesday’s election, a 51% increase in turnout over last year, when 276 ballots were cast.

New members

Skufca earned 407 votes to secure her seat on the board — that’s out of a total of 566 ballots cast. People had the option to vote for two of four candidates.

Skufca, a Wilmington resident, said she and other district stakeholders in Wilmington wanted to see more town representation on the board. Skufca was a speech pathologist in the Lake Placid Central School District for 33 years. Now that she’s working part-time, she’s been looking for ways to contribute to the community.

“I appreciate the support from everyone in both Lake Placid and Wilmington,” Skufca wrote in a message on Tuesday night. “I know now the work begins, but I will put forth my best effort possible to ensure quality education at LPCSD.”

Briggs garnered 224 votes. He was the village attorney for 15 years and the town of North Elba attorney for 12 years, and he said he feels like he has something to contribute to the district. Briggs said that his top priority on the school board would be analyzing every situation with a perspective that prioritizes students and their education.

Briggs said in a message on Tuesday that he’s “excited and looking forward to serving the community in this new, challenging capacity.”

New budget

Eighty-six percent of Lake Placid Central School District voters who cast ballots in Tuesday’s election voted to approve the district’s $20,911,744 proposed 2022-23 budget, which carries a slight tax levy decrease.

With the new budget, the district’s tax levy will drop by 0.2% from $16,710,000 in 2021-22 to $16,675,694 in 2022-23.

Also on the ballot was the option to approve or reject the district’s proposed repair reserve fund, which voters approved 471 to 75. The vote authorizes a transfer of $1 million from budgetary appropriations and/or unreserved fund balance to the reserve fund for site, building and athletic field improvements, furnishings and equipment.

Voters also voted 525 to 30 to increase funding for the Wilmington E.M. Cooper Memorial Public Library from $15,470 to $16,090 annually; and authorized the lease of two 66-passenger school buses for a period not exceeding five years at an annual cost not exceeding $44,200 by a 501 to 56 vote.


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