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Letter: District Clerk Responds

I am both alarmed and concerned that the editorial board of The Westbury Times did not properly fact-check before printing such a slanderous letter wrought with errors, innuendos and libelous comments from Mrs. Connie Locascio.  The public needs to be reminded that it was during [Locascio’s] tenure on the Westbury Board of Education, that the commissioner of the New York State Education Department overturned the 2008 trustee election because “errors in the conduct of the election were of such nature and scope as to vitiate [corrupt] the fundamental fairness of the election.”

It was also under her tenure that a majority of members of the board of education agreed that there was an overwhelming necessity for a full-time district clerk. Me being appointed to the position was not a new contrivance of the currentlyseated board but a dire need evidenced by the fact that for only the third time in the history of the NYS Education Department, the commissioner nullified an election due to gross oversights.

The annual meeting (or election) coming up on May 18, 2010 will be conducted in a fair and unbiased manner.  In place are the mandates set forth by New York State: There will always be two poll inspectors per machine at all times and each polling site will have a chief election inspector whose decisions are final and binding.  Note, that neither of these requirements were in place in the ill-fated trustee election of 2008.

Two months ago, I spoke with the board of education along with the administration and got unanimous support to have a neutral party oversee the election so that there would be no appearance of impropriety and to ensure that the election would be conducted in the fairest possible manner.  The general public should feel confident that all checks and balances have been and will be scrutinized and that this election, unlike the past, will be fundamentally fair, impartial and conducted to the letter of the law.

If Mrs. Locascio had taken the time to ask the board or the duly appointed district clerk what remedies have been put in place, such a defaming letter would not have been necessary, nor put in print.

Rocco N. Lanzilotta
District Clerk
Westbury Board of Education