Two candidates face off for the Marion County School Board District two seat

Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 11:07 PM EDT
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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) - Don Browning who was appointed the Marion County School Board district two seat last summer by the governor announced he won’t be running for reelection.

So candidates Lori Conrad who’s a veteran teacher and business owner will face Joseph Suranni who’s currently a student services manager at Belleview-Santos Elementary school.

They both talked about what they’ll do with overpopulating schools.

“Setting up portables and making new classrooms maybe adding wings things that are a smaller budget commitment so we can meet the needs of students that are coming into Marion County,” said Conrad.

Suranni said there needs to be a way to build new schools.

“We must find solutions to this problem. I’m not sure if concurrence is the answer I’m not sure if impact fees are the answer I know that no one wants more taxes but we do need new school buildings.”

The 1 mill referendum for CTE, art, music, P.E. classes and to keep schools safe is up for renewal on the ballot in November.

Conrad said she wants residents to help continue the programs.

“You can see how that would impact our student achievement. We spend 2.8 million goes to safe schools that are not only our SRO’s that are also hardening our school campuses.”

Suranni doesn’t want to add more taxes but agrees to the referendum to a certain extent.

“I would however support a 1 mill tax that was for growth and development and building of schools or for some type of capital outlay to help fix our aging buildings.”

Early voting in Marion County is August 13-20 with the election on August 23.

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