Update: The Kings Park Board of Education voted in favor of approving a lease agreement for New Beginnings Child Care Center to rent the space once occupied by New Discovery Child Care in the district administration building.
The vote took place at a special meeting held Wednesday. Marie Goldstein, Liz Barrett and Charlie Leo were present and voted in favor. Diane Nally and Tom Locascio were not present for the vote.
Locascio said in a phone conversation Wednesday evening that the board was in agreement after an executive session held Tuesday night.
"The five of us were all comfortable with it. If I were there I would have voted yes," he said.
Locascio said the center would now be able to go forward with a Sept. 1 start date.
"We did not want to jeopardize their ability to operate and function on time," said Locascio.
Figures for rent were not immediately available. Locascio said under New York State law, the rent must cover the expense of the facility and the district is not allowed to subsidize it.
A new Kings Park childcare center may have to wait a bit longer as the Kings Park Board of Education reviews the lease agreement and proposal for the new school.
New Beginnings owner, Sylvia Bastone Child Care Center at the district's Lawrence Avenue administration building. Bastone worked for New Discovery as the education director.
The lease agreement for the proposal has already been drawn up the district’s attorneys; however, the board has not had the opportunity to review it. The agreement was completed on Friday.
"We want to entertain it, but we have questions," said trustee Liz Barrett.
The board unanimously agreed that the item should be tabled and reviewed in an executive session immediately following the meeting.
"We need to be very thorough," said board president, Marie Goldstein. "We will try to expedite it, but we would be remiss if we didn't look into it."
According to district superintendent, Susan Agruso, the proposal is the only serious inquiry into the property that they have received.
"One person has expressed interest, but we have not received a proposal," she said. "A few rejected the rent."
In addition to reviewing the lease agreement, Agruso said the board should consider whether or not they want to make money on the agreement or just a small profit, with the primary concern being providing the community with a child care facility.
"I think everybody up here is definitely interested in exploring the next step. Having the opportunity to bring in another daycare center is a wonderful idea," said trustee Tom Locasio. "I am in agreement, we should pause for a minute before and make sure everybody is comfortable with the language of the contract."
The agreement drawn up is for a three-year lease.
Bastone, cited the pressing issue of September enrollment looming and urged the district to act quickly.
"I agree with everything that the board has said tonight. My only concern is that is that the longer I wait; it is already September next week. The longer I wait the more registrations I am losing."
Bastone said she has completed all of the necessary paperwork and has obtained a license for the space.
Goldstein said the board would discuss it after the meeting and reach out to Bastone as soon as "some type of resolve was reached"
"I think it is something the community has always enjoyed having here," she said.