Mark Kamberg, East Williston board president, seeks 4th term

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East Williston school board President Mark Kamberg

The only contested election Mark Kamberg has faced was in 2008, when he unseated East Williston school board Trustee Sigi Huhn.

That won’t change this year. Kamberg, the school board president for the past seven years, is the only candidate for his seat in next month’s election. No others filed petitions declaring candidacy by Monday’s deadline.

Kamberg, now seeking a fourth three-year term, said he doesn’t think about why he hasn’t faced any opposition.

“I really just think about what I’ve tried to do for the community and who I’ve tried to be as a person, as a trustee, as a father and as a friend,” he said.

Kamberg, 50, has lived in Albertson for 16 years and is the president of S. Kamberg & Company, the Great Neck-based food ingredients company his father founded.

Kamberg said he is most proud of the board’s efforts to keep spending at “record lows” in recent years while adding new academic programs.

“I want to continue to work with administration to be able to look for new and creative ways that we could not only support our program, but enhance it,” Kamberg said.

Upcoming labor contract negotiations will likely be the board’s biggest challenge in Kamberg’s next term, he said. Current contracts with four of the district’s labor unions, including the teachers union, expire in 2018.

A report by the district’s Financial Advisory Committee last month said those contracts will be important to limiting spending growth and complying with the state’s cap on property tax increases.

Additional mandates from the state on top of the tax cap, such as staffing requirements for special education classes, also pose budget challenges, Kamberg said.

He also wants to continue recent efforts to improve the infrastructure and security systems at the district’s buildings, he said.

Kamberg said he considers his position on the board a privilege, and he’s grateful for the trust the community has put in him.

“It’s a volunteer role that I’ve truly enjoyed and I feel that I’m a part of something that is good for our community as a whole,” he said.

East Williston school district residents can cast ballots for Kamberg’s seat and the district’s $58.3 million 2017-18 budget on May 16 from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Wheatley School gymnasium.

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