WEST MILFORDThe board of education gave a nod of approval to the preliminary 2005/2006 district budget, which came in at $58,584,980. When voters go to the polls on April 19, they will most likely also be voting on a separate question one that asks for an additional $229,000. This amount lumps eight unrelated expenses together and includes repairs, technology, reinstating educational programs, and employee benefits to name a few. Previously, these expenses would have been part of the regular budget, but, like most districts across New Jersey, West Milford is having to make some hard decisions in order to fit within the tight confines of new state regulations. What's the tax impact? According to district Business Administrator Steven Cea, the average household will see their annual bill go up by about $129. If the separate question passes, that will represent an additional $20. Prior to the public vote, officials from the district will hold a series of meetings to explain the budget and answer questions. A schedule of these meetings is on page 8. The search for the superintendent nears to a close and on this Tuesday night the board will host a public forum to introduce residents to the final two candidates. When the search started the district sent out 30 applications. Sixteen of the applications were returned. The board asked to interview five of the candidates, but ended up only interviewing three. The chosen candidate will take the helm on July 1. In other board business: High school students Daniel Anderson, Melody OOstdyk and Eric Sandve won first, second and third place respectively in the Veterans of Foreign Wars Voice of Democracy essay contest. It is an annual scholarship contest with prizes on the local, district, state and national level. Patrick Loughman from the local VFW post presented the winners with awards and checks. Anthony Cisternino and John Paul VanAlstyne presented a video tape they produced (along with Lee Ann Stern) in memory of Lance Corporal Brian Parrello, who recently died in Iraq.