November 4, 2009 |

Measure EE Breezes To Victory- Silbiger, Paspalis, Siever Win School Board Berths

Measure EE, the parcel tax that will guarantee funds for the Culver City School District, breezed to victory Tuesday night. More than $1 million per year is expected.

The measure required a two/thirds majority and received more than 74 percent approval. For the next five years Culver City residents will be billed $96 per year per parcel, an amount they deemed worthwhile in order to maintain the city’s history of providing quality education.

In recent weeks supportive letters to the editor of The Observer came from not only parents of present students but also from older residents who said their children were grown.

In the race for three vacant School Board seats the winners were Karlo Silbiger, Kathy Paspalis and Patricia Siever. At the next meeting in a month they will replace Dana Russell, Saundra Davis and Jessica Beagles-Roos. The three retiring incumbents each served for eight years.

The new School Board members will join Steve Gourley and Scott Zeidman.

Silbiger received 63 more votes than Paspalis, Siever was a distant third but earned a School Board seat over Alan Elmont. Far behind were Robert Zirgulis, Gary Abrams and Roger Maxwell, who withdrew his candidacy but remained on the ballot. Maxwell came sixth in the field of seven, garnering over 100 more votes than Abrams, who finished last.

This is Elmont’s second run for the board.

Zirgulis sent an email of congratulations to the three winners.

“You all worked hard on your campaigns and I’m sure you’ll work just as hard for our schools,” he wrote.

Silbiger, who is in his mid-20s, is the son of City Council member and former mayor Gary Silbiger, The younger Silbiger was active in local politics in his teens and had previously sought City Council commissions. His mother, Barbara Honig, previously served on the school board.

Ms. Paspalis, an attorney and a newcomer to local politics, is the mother of an El Marino Language School student.

Siever, the wife on Luther Henderson, who has run for city Council, is a West Los Angeles College professor with 32 years of experience in the educational field and has been on numerous community boards.

A challenge to the new Board will be to deal with declining revenues due to state budget cuts. In the last two years $6 million has been reduced.

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