DeRuyter wins school board seat; voter turnout down 64% from last year

First-time candidate John DeRuyter won a three-year term on the school board in the only contested race in the Oct. 3 municipal election, which drew the fewest number of voters to the polls in years.

The turnout was down 64% from last year’s election, when the mayor’s office and two bond issues were on the ballot.

The borough assembly certified the election results on Oct. 5, with 192 votes cast on election day and 26 absentee and early votes added to the count. The total of 218 ballots is down from 602 votes cast in the 2022 election; 486 votes in 2021; 485 in 2020; and 406 in 2019.

DeRuyter defeated incumbent school board member Esther Aaltséen Reese, 129-87. Reese was elected to a one-year term last October.

DeRuyter is a member of the school district’s Secondary Advisory Committee and also serves on the borough’s Economic Development Board.

He joins the school board as it confronts a new challenge: The district overspent its account for sending student athletes to state competition last year and now needs to draw money from somewhere else to plug the gap, while also deciding on a funding plan for this year and future years.

The school board is scheduled to consider state travel budget options and hear from the public at a work session at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 16, in Evergreen Elementary School.

In the three uncontested races on the Oct. 3 election ballot, incumbent Anne Morrison (183 votes) was reelected to the borough assembly, winning a three-year term. First-time candidate Michael J. Ottesen (182 votes) also won an uncontested three-year term on the assembly.

Incumbent Port Commissioner Gary Morrison was uncontested in his bid for another three-year term, receiving 205 votes.


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