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Johnsburg superintendent responds to accusations in political ads

Johnsburg Central School Superintendent Mike Markwica

Johnsburg Central School Superintendent Mike Markwica Jim Nash

— While Johnsburg Central School Superintendent Mike Markwica concedes that taxpayers have a right to voice their negative opinions about public officials, he says one critic has printed some factual errors in his recent News Enterprise advertisements. The advertiser, however, is sticking behind his words.

Beginning April 14, school board candidate Anthony “Tony” Moro has been placing half-page political ads in the News Enterprise critical of the school district. Moro is a co-founder of the Johnsburg Central School Citizens Budget Committee and is no stranger to School Board meetings. And the content of his ads has been a hot topic of conversation among Markwica, board members and citizens at recent meetings.

The superintendent said he recognizes that some of Moro’s points are purely opinion but claims that some of the information from the ads below is inaccurate.

Asked if he stood behind his accusations in the Information Bulletin 1 and 2 advertisements, Moro said, “Yes I do.”

Information Bulletin 1 (April 14)

1) The School Board FAILED to reveal JCS’s huge future financial obligations, community knowledge of which would strengthen our school district in negotiating multi-annual contracts with teacher and staff unions.

Markwica: I guess there’s some opinion here, but we had two budget meetings this early winter and we put down there what we pay in retirement and health benefits. So I don’t believe we’re hiding anything.

2) The School Board FAILED to reveal just how much JCS taxpayers’ money is channeled directly to Albany in total annual union dues.

Markwica: This is my personal opinion, I can’t see this as anything but a lie. At that point, that is not taxpayers’ money; it’s in their paycheck. That’s like asking me to go and get all their grocery bills. It’s their decision what they do with that money at that point. I think that’s a manipulation of words ... Their paycheck would not decrease if they chose not to be part of the union. They would still have that amount of money in their paycheck.

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