Kyle Hughes: Contested elections held for members of the Board of Regents

By | March 12, 2014

The following article appears in the Saratogian.  Clearly there is zero accountibility for NYS BOR.

Contested elections held for members of the Board of Regents

By Kyle Hughes, NYSNYS News

ALBANY >> Legislators held rare contested elections Tuesday for members of the Board of Regents, reflecting the public outcry over the Education Department rollout of the Common Core school standards program.

But in the end, neither a public outcry nor contested votes mattered and the status quo prevailed thanks to a majority vote by Democrats. The only surprise was the last minute decision of one incumbent to not seek reappointment.

Voting for more than two hours along party lines in a joint Senate-Assembly session, legislators re-elected “at-large” members Wade Norwood of Rochester and James Cottrell of Brooklyn, and Staten Island’s Christine Cea. In a concession to Common Core critics, Democrats pulled the nomination of James Jackson of Albany, replacing him with Josephine Victoria Finn, a Monticello lawyer and inspirational and weight-loss speaker.

The vote, whose outcome as always was decided by Democratic votes since they comprise an overall majority of the Legislature, was notable for the participation of Senate Republicans who usually skip the session. The Senate GOP and several Assembly Republicans cast blanket no votes for candidates, citing Common Core and the Democratic control of the process.

“Until there are fundamental changes, this is one of the few lightning rod opportunities to exercise our judgment,” Senate Education Committee Chair John Flanagan (R-Suffolk County) said.

“A majority of members in the New York State Assembly have voted to accept the status quo and keep those responsible for this disastrous rollout in power,” Senator Joseph Griffo (R-Oneida County) said after the vote. “This decision underscores why it’s important to permanently change the way Regents are selected. I have advocated for voters to pick Regents during school budget referendums. I want those most affected by these policy changes to have a say in who is deciding how our children should learn.”

It’s not clear when the last contested Regents votes occurred, but there was speculation that has not happened since the 1970s, when a Buffalo community leader named Pasquale Rubino was nominated as an alternative and lost….

Click here to see who didn’t get elected.  Warning it may completely ruin your day…

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