If you had the chance to provide new bleachers and locker rooms to each and every Manhasset Middle School and High School student without increasing your taxes or requiring any new money to be raised, would you do it?

Of course you would.

On May 19 you will have the chance to vote yes on the proposition to replace and refurbish the locker rooms and bleachers. Several years ago Manhasset residents voted to dedicate funds for this work as part of a larger capital program. This part of the capital program has been postponed over the past few years and now it is time to put the funds to work for the original purpose. It only needs your vote and the plan will be back in action this summer in time for the 2009/10 school season.

The need for new lockers is obvious to anyone who has set foot in any of the locker rooms and the bleachers are original to the school. This work can not be postponed again as it will be far more expensive in future years. The current economy is actually working in our favor by keeping material and construction costs at reasonable levels this year.

While some might think that these funds might be better used for other purposes, it is important to understand that because the original purpose was established by public vote, state law requires the funds to be spent consistent with the original intent of the voters. In short, the voters and school board entered into a promise several years ago to carry out this work.

The overall school budget is in check and voting yes to release the already dedicated monies from the capital reserve fund will have no impact on the budget or your taxes. The only impact will be seen in the years of safe and healthy use by the increasing student population that is in dire need of new facilities.

Keep the promise to our kids by voting yes to the locker room/bleacher proposition on May 19.

Michael R. Pecorino

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