The Daniel Boone School Board thanked and honored on Nov. 23 two departing school board members.
Andrew Basile and Larry Speed lost their re-election bids during the Nov. 3 general election.
Basile has served on the school board for eight years; Speed has served for two years.
The board recognized Basile’s eight years of public service by awarding him at the Nov. 9 meeting with the PSBA (Pennsylvania School Board Association) Honor Roll of School Board Service Award.
School Board President Richard Martino spoke about Basile and Speed, and what the board has accomplished with them for the school district the last two years, since Martino has been president.
“The Daniel Boone Area School District has taken steps to expand curriculum, refinanced bonds to reduce debt, controlled spending, ratified budgets both years without a tax increase and perhaps most importantly, recruited and/or promoted administrators whom we believe will continue making this an even better school district,” said Martino.
“This community has done itself a disservice by not re-electing him [Basile] to the board,” he continued, adding that Basile was elected to a board that “spent money unnecessarily and signed contracts they couldn’t afford.”
Martino said it was those circumstances that placed the district “into very deep debt and taxpayers under an onerous tax burden” by a board that “lacked transparency and foresight.”
Basile served as board president for several years and board secretary for the last two years.
Martino credited Basile with “personally leading the way to all of that being changed” by speaking out and voting against over-spending, the annual tax increases and forcing transparency.
“This really is a thankless job,” said Martino after the meeting.
Martino added that there is never a “correct” vote by board members; some part of the public is unhappy with the outcome.
Basile thanked all of the district staff, teachers, administrators and the 20 other board members he served with the last eight years.
“As one of nine board members, I want to thank the 20 people who have volunteered over the years,” he said. “Being on a board is a team effort, which resulted in stronger academics and financial situation. I feel the district is more sustainable.”
Martino credited Speed with being diligent in supporting the improvement of curriculum, not spending money frivolously and also helping to hold the line on taxes.
Speed also served as an Alternate Board Secretary.