Makarski, Marra, and Reinl, who will each serve a three-year term, are now among the board members who will select a new schools superintendent to replace Constantino Scerbo when he retires on June 30.
The election results seem to indicate that voters wanted new blood, fresh energy, and youth on the board as the Secaucus school district moves into a new era.
Marra and Reinl
With 1,067 votes and 18.11 percent of the ballots cast, Marra was the biggest winner of the night. Given her family's deep roots in the community, many in town believed Marra was poised to grab one of the vacant seats on the school board.
Marra, however, did not only benefit from her family name and history in the community. As the owner of Head Dress NY, a women's accessories company headquartered in Secaucus, she emphasized her acumen as a small businesswoman. This may have curried favor with voters concerned about property taxes.
In an interview last month, Marra said, "Managing the budget is going to be a major issue. With state funding getting cut, we won't necessarily be able to rely on aid and funding from the outside as our district grows."
Like Marra, incumbent Reinl was a strong winner Tuesday night. Reinl, who has been on the school board for 30 years, garnered 18.06 percent of the vote and 1,064 ballots.
The only candidate to buck the anti-incumbent trend, Reinl may owe her victory to the respect many in the community still hold for her.
New 'kid' on the block
The Makarski victory may have been one of the most interesting developments of the election.
Makarski's campaign for school board was his first run for an elected office. At just 22 years old, some voters believed he lacked the experience to mount a strong campaign. Some of his fellow candidates and voters openly referred to Makarski as "the kid."
However, his Secaucus-wide door-knocking efforts, thanks to a small army of family and friends, likely made the difference.
"If you're going to be on the school board, I know the most important thing is to be visible and accessible to people," Makarski said Wednesday. "So I knew the best way to approach my campaign was to meet as many people as I could face to face and let them get to know me."
As a political unknown, Makarski said he took nothing for granted. He said he knocked on doors in all three senior centers the weekend before the election.
Millevoi and Pirro
After 15 years on the school board, Millevoi seemed likely to win another three-year term. His defeat came as a surprise to some voters.
Pirro, who found herself embroiled in controversy in 2006, was in a more vulnerable position.
Two years ago, during the last Town Council election, Pirro caught heat for helping the Elwell Administration gather school board endorsements for John Shinnick, Robert Kickey, and Mike Grecco. The controversy surrounded a signature that was allegedly forged on a political flier for that Town Council race.
Pirro garnered 754 votes, while Millevoi got 727. Gary Riebesell and former board member Thomas Troyer, the lowest vote-getters, received 624 and 655 votes respectively.
Reaction to 'political' board?
Despite his loss, Troyer is claiming victory on one front.
"One of the main points I tried to get across was that the school board was getting too political," Troyer said on Wednesday. "Even though I lost, I think if you look at the way people voted, they agreed with me."
Troyer has long been critical of Mayor Dennis Elwell and is one of a handful of outspoken residents who frequently take issue with the mayor's actions.
Mayor Elwell did not publicly endorse any candidates this year.
Because Millevoi and Pirro have been closely allied with Elwell in the past, Troyer believes their defeat can be interpreted as an indictment of the current administration.
Many voters have stated that they want the school board to remain free of the political infighting that often affects the Town Council.
For his part, Mayor Elwell took issue with Troyer's interpretation of the election results.
"His interpretation is completely erroneous," the mayor said. "The Board of Education members are freely elected, and once they are elected, they have a job to do. I do not get involved in their day-to-day operations. I have never approached any board member and asked them to do vote one way or the other."
"Now, I have at times asked voters to support bond measures and referenda. And on one occasion I went to a school board meeting and asked them to reconsider an action they were going to take. I spoke during the public comments portion of the meeting and then I left. Other than that, I have no input in how the board is run."
Voters approve school budget
On Tuesday, voters also approved the 2008-2009 school budget.
Last month the school board proposed a $34.2 million budget for next year, representing the smallest one-year increase in 11 years.
Ninety-five percent of the annual school budget comes from local property taxes, with the remainder coming from state aid. Residents had the opportunity to either approve or reject the tax-supported portion of the budget.
The new fiscal year begins on July 1.