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updated: 4/9/2013 11:36 PM

Strack, Weidman, Alfrejd, Roop on Grayslake Dist. 46 board

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With no incumbents running in Tuesday's election, voters were guaranteed to send newcomers to the Grayslake Elementary District 46 board.

Jill Alfrejd, Robert Roop, Steven Strack, James Weidman and Paul Sprenger were on the ballot for the four open board seats in the election. Incumbents Ray Millington, Michael Carbone, Keith Surroz and Karen Weinert did not seek re-election.

With all 29 precincts reporting, unofficial results show Strack with 1,491 votes, followed by Weidman's 1,452, Alfrejd with 1,435 and Roop's 1,310. Sprenger was out of the money with 1,002 tallies.

Public bickering has periodically marked District 46 board meetings with the members who have been there since 2011. Last month, for example, Carbone and board member Kip Evans got into a dispute with Millington and Weinert during a meeting regarding the resignation of board member Shannon Smigielski.

"That was the whole reason we were running, to establish a fresh start," Roop said Tuesday.

Alfrejd, Roop, Strack and Weidman will join veteran Susan Facklam and Evans on the District 46 board when they are officially seated next month. A replacement also must be found for the remaining two years of Smigielski's term.

Roop, Alfrejd, Weidman and Strack -- who informally supported each other in the election -- addressed the issues in depth for the Daily Herald in candidate questionnaires and during editorial board endorsement interviews. Sprenger did not participate.

One issue involved negotiations for a new teachers contract that would start in the 2014-15 academic year. In January, instructors went on strike for three days over salary and benefits.

District 46 board members and the Lake County Federation of Teachers union reached a tentative deal for a contract covering the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school seasons. No base salary hikes, raises for longevity or extra money for teachers who receive additional job-related academic credentials will be provided in the first year, with varying pay hikes in 2013-14.

Given the negotiations for the tentative deal stretched nearly a year, Alfrejd said she'd want talks for the next deal to start this summer.

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