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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

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Corzine to Nominate 10 Executive County Superintendents

By Herald Staff

TRENTON — Gov. Jon S. Corzine on Oct. 22 announced his intention to nominate 10 executive county superintendents who will begin serving in an acting capacity pending confirmation by the State Senate later this fall.
Those executives will be responsible to develop plans to eliminate school districts that do not operate schools, as in West Wildwood and Cape May Point.
They will also recommend and develop district consolidation plans to create or enlarge regional school districts in order to eliminate all but K (kindergarten) through grade 12 districts, subject to voter approval.
Cape May County’s executive nominee is Terrence J. Crowley of Pilesgrove, Salem County.
Adam C. Pfeffer of Stone Harbor was nominated as Cumberland County’s executive.
According to a release from the governor’s office, the executive county superintendent positions were created through one of the key property tax reform measures enacted during the special session on property tax reform and are a large component of the package of long-term reform and over $2 billion in immediate property tax relief instituted by the governor and legislature this year.
“This Administration is committed to enacting and promoting fiscal responsibility,” said Corzine.
“Executive county superintendents will have all the tools needed to help us achieve real property tax reform by encouraging schools districts to prioritize their spending decisions, maximize efficiency and control costs. In fact, we’re already seeing positive results from another key reform measure – the caps on tax levies – and the work of the Executive County Superintendents will build on that success so we can reduce New Jersey’s highest-in-the-nation property taxes,” Corzine stated.
The new tax levy caps and an increase in state aid have reduced the annual increase in the school tax levy to 4.4 percent, the lowest since the 97-98 school year. Over the last three years, the increases were 6.6 percent, 5.9 percent, and 6 percent respectively.
The executive county superintendents will examine administrative and operational efficiencies and cost savings within the school districts of the counties represented. They will monitor performance in the five key components of school district effectiveness under the New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum: instruction and program; personnel; fiscal management; operations; and governance.
Each executive county superintendent will have the authority to disapprove portions of a school district’s budget if a district has not implemented all potential administrative efficiencies or if a budget includes excessive non-instructional expenditures.
Furthermore, the executive county superintendent will work with school districts to control costs by developing in-district special education programs and services and shared special education services within each county.
Executive county superintendent appointments are subject to advice and consent of the Senate.
The individuals announced Oct. 22 have been appointed to serve in an acting capacity, and their nominations will be submitted to the Senate once it reconvenes. The search process to fill the remaining executive county superintendent positions is ongoing.
In addition to those previously mentioned, the governor will nominate:
H. Mark Stanwood, Pitman, for Gloucester.
Osak, North Brunswick for Hudson.
Gerald J. Vernotica, Long Valley for Hunterdon.
Patrick Piegari, Basking Ridge for Middlesex.
Carole Knopp Morris, Neptune for Monmouth.
Bruce M. Greenfield, Ventnor City for Ocean.
Trudy Doyle, Bridgewater for Somerset.
Carmen M. Centuolo, Mountainside for Union.

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