School board races

First Posted: 5/22/2013

In the race for four seats on the Pittston Area School Board, Marty Quinn, of Hughestown, was the top vote getter on both the Democratic and Republican ballots. Quinn garnered 2,908 Democratic votes and 470 Republican.

Rounding out the Democratic ballot will be John Adonizio, of Hughestown, who received 2,507 votes, Bruce Knick, of Dupont, with 2,470 and R. Kent Bratlee, of Avoca with 2,271. Vito Quaglia, of Jenkins Township, Roseanne Ricotta, of Hughestown, and Marilyn Starna, of Pittston Township, were unsuccessful in obtaining a Democratic nomination.

Rounding out the Republican ballot will be Starna with 464 votes, Ricotta with 459 votes and Knick with 439 votes. Bratlee was unsuccessful in obtaining a Republican nomination.

Quinn and Adonizio previously served on the board. Starna, Knick and Bratlee are incumbents and Ricotta and Quaglia are newcomers.

Quinn, Knick, Bratlee and Ricotta ran as a team called Patriots First.

Big issues facing the district include increased security in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting, keeping up with technology and a $2 million budget shortfall which is looming in the district but could be acted on before any new members take office in December. Also on the table is the closure of the Benjamin Franklin Kindergarten Center in Dupont.

The district has a new administration in place. Its superintendent, George Cosgrove, and assistant superintendent, Jack Lussi, both retired last year and, as a cost-saving measure, Dr. Michael Garzella was hired to essentially replace them both. Also, the district’s principal of curriculum, Dr. Janet Donovan, was moved to a building principal position at the Intermediate Center.

One incumbent, Bob Linskey Jr., did not seek a second term on the board, instead opting to run for supervisor in Jenkins Township. He was defeated in that bid. Five other board members’ terms are not yet expired. They are Board President Charlie Sciandra, Anthony Guarglia, Joe Kelly, Richard Gorzkowski and John Donahue.

Wyoming Area

Across the river in Wyoming Area, current board president John Bolin was the top vote getter on the Democratic ballot (1,167 votes) and Jerry Stofko was the top vote getter on the Republican side (613 votes) in the race for four seats.

Rounding out the Democratic ballot was Jerry Stofko with 1,162, incumbent, John Marianacci with 1,033 and Nick DeAngelo with 811.

Failing to earn a Democratic nod was Toni Valenti with 760 votes, Kimberly A. Yochem with 625, John Paul Bonin with 490, Michael J. Brown with 445 and Ree Ree Deluca with 384.

Rounding out the Republican ballot was Bolin with 526 votes, Yochem with 488 and Marianacci with 439. Failing to secure a GOP nomination was Valenti with 424, Bonin with 411, DeAngelo with 364, Brown with 332 and Deluca with 200.

With Bolin, Stofko and Marianacci all garnering nominations on both sides, the race will likely come down to Yochem versus DeAngelo in November.

Two of the four incumbents, Gil Dominick and Frank Casarella, did not seek re-election.

Bolin and Marianacci, who have been on the board since 2005, ran as a team. Former board members Valenti and DeAngelo, who lost the last election by a hair, ran as a team. And the three newcomers from Exeter Township, Bonin, Yochem and Brown, ran as a team. DeLuca and Stofko ran independently.

Each candidate said the lack of a teachers’ contract is the biggest issue in the district.

The four winners in November will make up the next board, joining current members Estelle Campenni, Deanna Farrell, Mary Louise Degnan, Elizabeth Gober-Mangan and Carl Yorina Jr.

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