Utica School Board Member Anthony LaPolla Resigns Amid Questions About His Residency
With two newly elected Utica School Board members getting ready to take their seats on the district's board of education, a new opening has suddenly popped up.
Anthony LaPolla has confirmed to WIBX 950 that he resigned from his seat on the Utica School Board effective today. While LaPolla, who is of no relation to outgoing Utica BOE President Lou LaPolla, did confirm his resignation to WIBX he said he ''would prefer not to comment'' when asked why he was stepping aside. He also did not reply to further questions when asked if his resignation had anything to do with his change of address.
On Monday, WIBX 950 was made aware of a Freedom Of Information Law request regarding Anthony LaPolla's voter registration address.
Based on data provided by Oneida County Board of Elections in relation to that FOIL request, LaPolla changed his mailing address with the Board of Elections in April 2021 from a Utica address to an address in the town of New Hartford, but still listed a residential address within the city of Utica.
"Then in the November, 2021 General Election he voted by Affidavit Ballot and listed his residence," at a New Hartford address, according to an email from Oneida County BOE Republican Commissioner Nicole Shortell in response to that FOIL request.
On it's website regarding voter eligibility for Utica School budget and election voting, the the UCSD says voters must be registered to vote-in, or have lived-in the district at least 30 days prior to the election/budget vote.
For requirements to run for a school board seat, the Utica district site links the State School Board's Association website that reads:
Generally, school board candidates must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years old, qualified voters in the school district and able to read and write. They must be residents of their districts continuously for one year (as little as 30 days or as long as three years in some city school districts) before the election. They cannot be employed by the board on which they serve or live in the same household with a family member who is also a member of the same school board.
Beyond the requirements of living within the district (or being registered to vote there) at least 30 days prior to the election, WIBX did not find information on either website regarding a requirement to live in the district once becoming a school board member.
LaPolla was in the midst of serving his first-term as a member of the Utica School Board. He was elected in May of 2018, leaving two-years remaining on his six-year term.