Election News

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Though political fighting and manipulation of the media to wage a war may seem like a 21st-century concept, Clinton and Trump will not be breaking any ground this summer and fall when the mud inevitably continues to fly.

By Rich Acritelli

With the presidential election of 2016 upon this nation, it has been a hard fight between former United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and businessman Donald Trump. Today, Americans are watching these opponents utilize “mudslinging” and “deceitful” techniques to gain votes, but these tactics have been used almost from the start of this republic.

When President George Washington decided to retire after his second term, his vice president, John Adams, and the former secretary of state, Thomas Jefferson, ran for presidency in 1796. Both of these men liked each other personally, but detested each other politically. This was during the establishment of political parties between the Federalists (Adams) and Democratic-Republicans (Jefferson).

Alexander Hamilton was a dominant leader within the Federalist Party who believed Adams was not psychologically capable of being president. Hamilton urged Federalist politicians from South Carolina to withhold any votes that would help Adams win the election; Hamilton wanted Thomas Pinckney, a Federalist from that state, to become the next president. If Pinckney won, Hamilton estimated it was possible for Adams to gain enough support to be a runner-up as a vice president. Hamilton was unable to achieve this political scenario, and Adams won the election. Jefferson became his vice president from the rival Democratic-Republican Party.

Hamilton again threw his influence into the presidential election of 1800. Jefferson and Aaron Burr tied, and Congress decided the contest. Hamilton supported his chief opponent in Jefferson, due to his notions that Burr was a political tyrant, and motivated congressional leaders to vote for Jefferson to become the third president of the United States. This was also the last election that sought “a winner take all” process for the presidency and vice presidency. The government established the system of running mates elected together to represent either party in the White House after that.

In 1860, the country watched a junior politician in Abraham Lincoln seek the highest position in the land. He was a self-educated leader, a respected lawyer and a one-term representative in Congress. While he did not have the political clout of the other candidates, he served within the Illinois General Assembly. Although it is believed slavery was the cornerstone of his values, he pushed for revisions within the tariff, free labor, the Transcontinental Railroad and the Homestead Act of 1862. He ran against many strong Republicans, and while he defeated William Seward from New York, he later made his rival into a trusted member of his cabinet as secretary of state.

During his failed attempt to win a seat in the U.S. Senate against Stephen Douglas, Lincoln debated he would never support the expansion of slavery in the new states and territories. It was these property rights concerns that the southerner never forgot when Lincoln decided to run for the presidency. When he proved to be a serious candidate, Democratic newspapers that opposed the end of slavery, wrote that Lincoln was “semiliterate, ignorant, an uncultured buffoon, homely and awkward,” according to historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. Although Lincoln was perhaps our greatest leader, both Republicans and Democrats were highly unsure about his motives and abilities to lead the nation at the cusp of the Civil War.

Though political fighting and manipulation of the media to wage a war may seem like a 21st-century concept, Clinton and Trump will not be breaking any ground this summer and fall when the mud inevitably continues to fly.

Setauket native David Calone, left, barely trails former Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst, right, after Tuesday’s primary election. File photos

Waiting is the hardest part.

The Democratic primary to decide who will face freshman U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley) in the race for the 1st Congressional District seat in November was June 28, but as of print time on Wednesday, Zeldin’s opponent was still a mystery.

The former town supervisor in Southampton Anna Throne-Holst led Setauket native and former prosecutor and venture capitalist David Calone by just 29 votes when the dust settled on election night. More than a week later, it’s still unclear who will come out on top.

There are about 1,800 absentee ballots that haven’t been counted — roughly 15 percent of the overall vote

The Suffolk County Board of Elections will begin counting the 1,794 absentee ballots cast on Thursday, though a department employee said that process might take several days. The absentee ballots will be counted by a bipartisan team of department employees in addition to representatives from both campaigns at the Board of Elections office in Yaphank.

In emailed statements from their campaigns, both candidates expressed confidence about what the tally will hold after all the votes are counted and thanked their supporters for their hard work to date.

“I’m proud to be in the lead after election night, and am most especially proud of the positive campaign we ran,” Throne-Holst said through a press representative. “I owe a heartfelt debt of gratitude to our thousands of supporters and volunteers, who are invaluable partners in getting our message to voters.”

Calone said he has high hopes thanks to the nearly nonexistent deficit.

“Given that there are about 1,800 absentee ballots that haven’t been counted — roughly 15 percent of the overall vote — no one knows who will end up on top until we count every vote,” Calone said in a statement. “More than anything, I’m grateful to Democrats around the district who volunteered to help my campaign.”

Neither candidate hesitated to turn their sites toward Zeldin.

“I expect to prevail once every vote is counted and I look forward to continuing our campaign to provide a strong contrast to Congressman Lee Zeldin, who is one of Donald Trump’s greatest advocates in Washington,” Calone said.

Throne-Holst also invoked presumptive Republican presidential nominee and businessman Donald Trump in referring to Zeldin.

“I look forward to working with Democrats throughout the district as we focus on our common goal of defeating Lee Zeldin,” she said. “We all know Lee Zeldin is not looking forward to going up against my record, and voters will reject not only his extremist views and votes, but also his enthusiastic embrace of Donald Trump, who is dangerous for both Long Island and the country.”

At the end of the night on June 28, unofficial results showed Throne-Holst with 5,446 votes — 50.09 percent of the vote — and Calone with 5,417 votes — 49.82 percent.

Zeldin unseated six-term former U.S. Rep. Tim Bishop (D) by a wide margin back in 2014, with a final vote total of 54 percent to 45 percent.

Check back next week for an update and results, should the counting be complete.

Photo by Alex Petroski Tom Suozzi speaks to voters. Photo by Alex Petroski.

Overall Suozzi earned 6,532 votes, Stern garnered 4,069 votes, Kaiman collected 4,060, Kaplan saw 2,815 and Clarke received 909

Former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi (D-Glen Cove) came out on top after Tuesday’s Democratic primary, beating out four other candidates vying for the nomination in New York’s 3rd Congressional District.

After declaring victory, Suozzi was set to take on Republican state Sen. Jack Martins from Old Westbury in November for the seat of Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington). The former county executive and mayor of Glen Cove beat out Suffolk County Legislator Steve Stern (D-Dix Hills), former North Hempstead Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman (D-Great Neck), North Hempstead Town Councilwoman Anna Kaplan and attorney Jonathan Clarke Tuesday.

Israel announced back in January that he would not seek re-election after 15 years in Congress.

Overall Suozzi earned 6,532 votes, Stern garnered 4,069 votes, Kaiman collected 4,060, Kaplan saw 2,815 and Clarke received 909.

In Suffolk County alone, Stern took first with 2,540 votes, according to the Suffolk County Board of Elections unofficial results, and Suozzi came in second with 1,044 votes. But Suozzi took the lead in Nassau County and Queens, with 3,977 votes and 1,511 respectively, according to each area’s board of elections.

Suozzi said Wednesday morning that he is excited to continue to work for his constituents after the support they showed for him last night.

“I am so grateful and appreciative to the voters… for supporting me in the Democratic primary,” he said in a statement.  “It is clear the people in the district are looking for someone who has the ability to cut through the blame-game, finger-pointing and yelling that’s coming out of Washington these days. I look forward to meeting and talking to all of the voters and have a discussion with both sides on many of the issues to come up with solid solutions.”

Suozzi served as county executive of Nassau from 2002-09 and mayor of Glen Cove from 1994-2001, but has been out of politics for about six years. He is a certified public accountant and is currently of counsel to Harris Beach law firm in Uniondale. He lives in Glen Cove with his wife Helene and their three children. In his time in office, Suozzi said he fought to root out corruption in state politics and was named environmentalist of the year by the New York League of Conservation Voters, a statewide environmental organization.

Stern said although he didn’t win, he intends to stand behind Suozzi in the general election.

Suffolk County Legislator Steve Stern. File photo by Rohma Abbas
Suffolk County Legislator Steve Stern. File photo by Rohma Abbas

“I ran for Congress to stand up for a woman’s right to choose, protect our precious environment and to end the [National Rifle Association’s] grip on Congress,” Stern said in a statement. “While we did not prevail at the polls, the fight for these critical issues — and to make Congress work for New York’s middle-class families again — goes on. Now, it is time for everyone to unite behind our nominee to ensure that our Congressional seat stays Democratic in November.”

Stern was backed by Israel, and is in his sixth term as a Suffolk County legislator in the 16th Legislative District. He is the chairman of the county’s Veterans Committee and has worked on many projects to help increase the quality of life for veterans on the North Shore.

Kaiman echoed Stern’s sentiment to rally behind the Democratic nominee.

“[Tom Suozzi] will be a strong and successful candidate in November and an effective representative come next year when he takes his seat as United States Congressman for the 3rd Congressional District of New York,” he said in an email.

Kaplan and Clarke did not immediately return calls for comment.

Setauket native David Calone, left, barely trails former Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst, right, after Tuesday’s primary election. File photos

Polls closed Tuesday at 9 p.m. for the Democratic primary in the 1st Congressional District, but voters still have to wait to find out who will face freshman U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley) come November.

Setauket native David Calone trailed former Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst by 29 votes by the end of Tuesday, unofficial Suffolk County Board of Elections results showed, but neither candidate felt comfortable enough to speak definitively about the race.

Unofficial results showed Throne-Holst with 5,446 votes — 50.09 percent of the vote — and Calone with 5,417 votes — 49.82 percent.

Calone, a former prosecutor, venture capitalist, and North Shore native, said his campaign would be waiting for the nearly 1,700 absentee ballots to be counted in the coming week before making any further statements on his status in the primary race.

“We did not have Wall Street fundraisers, and we did not have $720,000 of super PAC funding poured in for us in the last three weeks — but here we are in a virtual tie,” Calone said Wednesday. “I cannot begin to thank all the volunteers and supporters who have put their hearts and souls into this campaign over the past year. Together, we knocked on thousands of doors, held nearly fifty house parties, and made tens of thousands of phone calls to voters in every corner of this district.”

By the end of the primary campaign, Calone received several endorsements from various elected officials and community groups, including state Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket), Suffolk County Legislator Sarah Anker (D-Mount Sinai) and Brookhaven Town Councilwoman Valerie Cartright (D-Port Jefferson Station).

Calone has experience working as director of six privately held companies throughout the country and has helped organize the bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the U.S. House of Representatives, advocating federal policies that promote job creation through the development of startups and other small businesses. In that role, he helped launch Startup Day Across America, an event to connect federal officials with early-stage companies in their regions. He also founded the Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund, which provides funding to six early-stage companies based on technology developed at Long Island’s research institutions.

Throne-Holst, who received support from Zeldin’s predecessor, former U.S. Rep. Tim Bishop, U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and longtime incumbent U.S. Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington) — who Throne-Holst said was pivotal in convincing her to run — spoke with gravitas about her standing after all voting district tallies were in Tuesday night, excluding absentee votes.

“We are waiting for all votes to be counted,” she said in a statement, “but are proud to have a lead at the end of election night. We are confident going forward that victory will be ours now … and in November.”

Throne-Holst co-founded the Hayground School — an elementary school dedicated to supporting children with different learning needs. After serving as a councilwoman, she was the first Democrat to be elected supervisor in Southampton since 1993, overcoming a red-leaning electorate on the East End.

Zeldin unseated the six-term Democrat Bishop by a wide margin back in 2014, with a final vote total of his 54 percent to 45 percent.

“While the two Democrats continue to slug it out against each other beyond a primary with historically low voter turnout, I remain focused on my work to pursue my ‘New Era of American Strength’ agenda to protect America’s security at home and abroad, help grow our economy, support our veterans and first responders, improve health care and the quality of education, repair our nation’s infrastructure and safeguard our environment,” Zeldin said in a statement.

Out in the more western 3rd Congressional District, former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi (D-Glen Cove) bested four other candidates vying for the nomination to run for Israel’s seat after the longtime incumbent said he would not seek re-election earlier this year.

Asharoken Mayor Greg Letica, center, and Trustees Laura Burke and Mel Ettinger are all seeking a third term in Village Hall. Photo from Laura Burke

Asharoken is not shaking up its leadership in the coming year, as per the results of Tuesday’s village election.

Mayor Greg Letica and Trustees Mel Ettinger and Laura Burke were all re-elected. Letica recieved 167 votes, Ettinger got 150 and Burke had 143.

Ettinger said he is excited to begin another term for Asharoken.

“I’m thrilled to have been re-elected together with Greg and Laura,” he said in a phone interview Wednesday. “The three of us are looking forward to working with the other two trustees for another two years, and continuing to work on some of the issues facing our village and whatever new issues arise.”

Letica echoed his sentiments.

“I am very happy to be re-elected and I look forward to continuing to serve the residents,” he said. “And I also want to thank them for their support.”

Burke said she is excited to continue to help the village.

“I would like to say that I am pleased and honored to serve alongside the other elected officials of Asharoken, in particular Mayor Letica who brings a tremendous amount of honesty and integrity to our village government,” she said in an email. “I will continue to strive to make decisions in the best interests of our residents and village.

Bill Glass is a newly appointed village justice in Port Jefferson. Photo from Glass

By Elana Glowatz

Justice will be served during the Port Jefferson government election later this month, with three people vying to be a village judge.

Bill Glass is a newly appointed village justice in Port Jefferson. Photo from Glass
Bill Glass is a newly appointed village justice in Port Jefferson. Photo from Glass

There are three years remaining on the term of former Village Justice Peter Graham, a judge of more than 30 years who died in office late last year, just months after being re-elected to his position on the bench. Bill Glass, the man appointed to fill in until the next election, is running to be returned to the seat and faces challenges from residents Tara Higgins and Scott Zamek.

Glass, 61, decided to run “because I really enjoy the job and I’d like to keep doing it.”

The lifelong resident, who also has volunteered with the Port Jefferson Fire Department for more than four decades, has a private law practice in the village through which he represents fire and emergency medical service groups throughout Suffolk County.

He graduated from Fordham Law School and once filled the roles of village prosecutor, village attorney and village trustee. He was also previously an assistant district attorney in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, where he worked under village Trustee Larry LaPointe in the Rackets Bureau.

Glass tried to win a village justice seat in 2011, but voters re-elected Graham.

People should vote for the married father of three this time because “I feel like I know the village inside and out,” he said. He has vast experience in criminal procedure law, which is a “key ingredient” in the village court. “I think that I’m … uniquely qualified for the position.”

Tara Higgins is running for village justice. Photo from the candidate
Tara Higgins is running for village justice. Photo from the candidate

Higgins grew up in East Setauket and moved to Port Jefferson 18 years ago, when she got married. The 50-year-old, who graduated from Seton Hall University School of Law, said she spent time in defense litigation for an insurance company before moving on to Islandia-based Lewis Johs Avallone Aviles LLP. She does municipal defense work and civil defense litigation for that firm.

“I just thought that it was a natural progression in my career,” she said about running for village justice. “I’ve tried cases, I’ve written appellate briefs and I thought, ‘Why not?’”

Voters should choose her because she is experienced in the courtroom, she said.

“I’ve spent my entire career in the courthouse,” Higgins said. “There are plenty of lawyers who never see the inside of a courtroom.”

The married mother of two high school kids, whose father named the Tara Inn pub in uptown Port Jefferson after her, said, “I’m hardworking, honest, fair and think I’ve got a good temperament for the position.”

Zamek grew up in the village, graduating from the local high school, and returned with his wife to raise his three daughters in Port Jefferson.

Scott Zamek is running for village justice. Photo from the candidate
Scott Zamek is running for village justice. Photo from the candidate

The 55-year-old graduated from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and has a private practice in Hauppauge where he focuses on transactional real estate. He explained that he represents landlords and developers with buying, selling and borrowing transactions.

He decided to run for justice because he’s always wanted to be a judge and has always been involved with the community, including working summer jobs for the highway department, volunteering with youth sports, helping out with the Port Jefferson arts council and, for the last two decades, serving with the Royal Educational Foundation.

“I think it’s time for me to step up a little bit,” Zamek said. He wants to give back to the village because “I feel that’s something everybody should do. … I want to do what I can to make it as good of a place as possible.”

Voting is at the Port Jefferson Village Center on June 21, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Also on the ballot will be two trustee seats, for which the incumbents are running unopposed for re-election. Bruce Miller is running for his second term on the board and Bruce D’Abramo is running for his fourth.

Bruce Miller is running for re-election. Photo by Elana Glowatz

By Elana Glowatz

Two village trustees are unopposed for re-election this month, each with his own goals for improving Port Jefferson.

Bruce D’Abramo and Bruce Miller are seeking a fourth term and a second term on the village board of trustees, respectively.

Bruce Miller is running for re-election. Photo by Elana Glowatz
Bruce Miller is running for re-election. Photo by Elana Glowatz

Miller wants to keep up his work to get the Port Jefferson power plant upgraded, known as repowering. The aging power plant runs on outdated technology and many residents and officials fear the loss of its significant property tax revenue if it were to shut down without being rebuilt.

“It’s something that I’ve been doing for about 20 years,” he explained, between his work on the Port Jefferson school board and with the local group Grassroots Committee to Repower Port Jefferson. “I want to try to see this thing through. I think it’s very important to the community. I have other interests but I have I think significant expertise in this area and think that I can benefit the people of the village.”

Miller is also interested in environmental issues, and said he has been working with the village’s conservation committee on making the village more energy-efficient and on strengthening the power grid in Port Jefferson to better withstand storms. He is helping put together a proposal to receive grant funding for a microgrid, which would be independent of the regional grid and rely on its own power-generating resources — and thus keep the community, which includes two hospitals, going during power outages.

For those who may vote for him, Miller said he strives to “keep in mind [the idea of] a small maritime New England village.”

Bruce D’Abramo is running for re-election. Photo by Elana Glowatz
Bruce D’Abramo is running for re-election. Photo by Elana Glowatz

The other candidate, D’Abramo, is running for two more years because “I love what I’m doing in Port Jefferson and I love the difference that we’re making.”

He said his top priority in the past and in a new term is to “turn uptown port Jefferson around into a community that we can all be proud of.”

One thing he is particularly proud of accomplishing in his third term, however, is in the downtown area: the beautification of Old Mill Creek.

The polluted creek winds through the west side of lower Port, including under Barnum Avenue and behind Village Hall, before flowing into the harbor. In addition to being contaminated by chemicals that had been dumped at an industrial site in Port Jefferson Station and had traveled through the groundwater, it was plagued by invasive plant species. But in the last year, the village put a plan into action to clean up the creek, improve its flow and remove the invasive species and replace them with native ones.

Another project he is proud of is using money left over in last year’s budget to pave additional streets in the part of the village referred to as the “poets section,” which includes Emerson Street, Longfellow Lane, Hawthorne Street and others.

“Every time we can put some money into the infrastructure, we’re doing something that’s going to last for a while; that’s going to make a difference,” D’Abramo said.

To the voters going to the polls later this month, the trustee said, “If they’re interested in seeing upper Port Jefferson change, then consider voting for me.”

Voting is at the Port Jefferson Village Center on June 21, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. There is also a village judge seat on the ballot, to complete the three years remaining on the term of Justice Peter Graham, who died in office in October, a few months after being re-elected. Graham, who was known for his colorful personality, had served the village for more than 30 years.

Bill Glass was appointed to replace him in the interim, and the lawyer is running for election to stay in that role. He faces challenges from Tara Higgins and Scott Zamek.

Members of the current village board of trustees in Head of the Harbor. Photo from the village

The incumbents came up big in Tuesday’s election in the Village of Head of the Harbor.

With Mayor Douglas Dahlgard and  trustees Judith Ogden and Gordon Van Vechten approaching the end of their current terms in April, residents voted to keep them on their side in Tuesday’s village vote.

Dahlgard received 187 to beat out 128 votes for challenger John Lendino of the Watchdog Party, who works as deputy commissioner in the village’s highway department.

Incumbent trustees Ogden and Van Vechten received 196 and 211 votes, respectively, beating out trustees candidate John DePasquale of St. James, who received 147 votes.

Four other Head of the Harbor residents received one or more votes as write-in candidates, including Dina Vivan with four votes, Carmela Lazio with two votes, Theresa O’Brien with one vote and John Kelly with one vote.

Northport Village trustees Jerry Maline, left, and Damon McMullen pose together. File photo

Northport Trustees Jerry Maline and Damon McMullen will each have a third term at the helm of their village.

Maline and McMullen each secured a seat on the village board of trustees Tuesday night over challenger Joe Sabia, with McMullen receiving 955 votes and Maline receiving 733 votes, according to the clerk’s office. Sabia finished third with 519 votes.

Maline and McMullen, who first won their seats in 2008, will have another four years together.

“It’s a very good working relationship,” Maline said in a phone interview last week. “We don’t always agree on things, but we talk it out and we come to a consensus on what’s best for the village. We support each other in our individual endeavors that help the village. We have a mutual respect for each other.”

One of the polarizing issues during this campaign cycle has been the board’s proposed budget, which would require piercing its 3.27 percent tax levy cap, causing a larger increase in taxes.

During a candidates night on March 8, Maline said piercing the state-mandated cap and increasing taxes above the limit, which the board can do with a 60 percent vote, would accommodate residents’ desires for village services.

“The facts are the facts,” Maline said at the event. “We don’t want to lessen your service. All the input I have from the residents [is] that you want the services to remain the same.”

McMullen said he is proud of the work he has done with the village’s budget.

“It’s been a privilege to be a part of the team that has helped the village get the best bond rating it can get,” McMullen said at the event.

Challenger Joe Sabia discusses taxes and the tax cap. Photo by Giselle Barkley
Challenger Joe Sabia discusses taxes and the tax cap. Photo by Giselle Barkley

Challenger Joe Sabia, who served on the Northport-East Northport school board and also ran for mayor in 2014, was opposed to the idea of piercing the cap.

“When you start to override the tax caps, it becomes a very, very dangerous thing because that means you’re raising your taxes higher than the rate of inflation,” Sabia said at the event.

None of the three candidates responded to requests for comment on Wednesday.

Giselle Barkley contributed to this report.

Challenger Joe Sabia discusses taxes and the tax cap. Photo by Giselle Barkley

With the polls open, residents have little time left to decide how to cast their votes. Last week’s candidate forum could help.

Former school board member Joe Sabia and incumbents Jerry Maline and Damon McMullen, who are all vying for two seats on the Northport Village Board of Trustees, discussed taxes, stormwater and more during a debate on March 8 at the Northport American Legion Post 694 Hall.

Maline and McMullen are each running for a third term.

Although Maline’s opening statement touched upon drivers speeding in the area and geese in village parks, residents were more concerned about why the village continues to pierce its tax levy cap in the annual budget.

Although the state mandates a fluctuating cap on how much municipalities can increase tax levies, a local board can override the cap and approve a budget above the limit with a supermajority of votes, or 60 percent. This year, the Northport board has proposed to pierce their 3.27 percent cap, for a new budget total of $20.4 million.

Incumbent Damon McMullen addressing rain garden inquiries. Photo by Giselle Barkley
Incumbent Damon McMullen addressing rain garden inquiries. Photo by Giselle Barkley

Maline said piercing the cap, and increasing taxes above the limit, would accommodate residents’ desires for village services.

“The facts are the facts,” Maline said at the event. “We don’t want to lessen your service. All the input I have from the residents [is] that you want the services to remain the same.”

The incumbent added that a lack of community participation makes it harder to come up with different ideas of addressing residents’ needs without increasing the budget.

“It’s a conglomerate of ideas, it’s not just ideas of people on the board,” Maline said.

For his part, McMullen said using reserve funding instead to offset a tax increase would negatively affect the village’s finances in the future.

Sabia felt the opposite. He proposed using reserve money to help keep taxes at bay and prevent the village from piercing the cap.

“My point would be to go through every single budget line item and every category in there and see what we can absolutely … reduce or make sure we’re not paying for duplicate services,” Sabia said.

While some residents continued pressing the candidates about taxes, other asked about the village’s rain garden plans.

Incumbent Jerry Maline speaks to residents. Photo by Giselle Barkley
Incumbent Jerry Maline speaks to residents. Photo by Giselle Barkley

In light of flooding in the area, the village has sought to establish a rain garden along Main Street. The garden would help catch the first inch to inch and a half of rainfall and filter out harmful chemicals in the process. According to McMullen, the village is currently waiting on a $500,000 grant to fund the garden, and is looking at ways to add catch basins for even more stormwater absorption.

“This is a method that’s been used around the country and it has been very successful,” he said of the rain garden.

Maline said he would continue to attend and participate in board meetings even if he is ousted from his seat. McMullen thanked residents for attending and said he hopes to upgrade the bathroom sinks in the village’s park, among other projects.

Sabia has his own agenda if elected, which includes maintaining handicap access to the parks, securing grants from the state to get more LED lights and maintaining the village’s sidewalks and roads. But his main focus remained on securing lower taxes for the village.

“You have to remember, we have a National Grid lawsuit against us. We have school districts that want more money from us,” Sabia said. “When you start to override the tax caps, it becomes a very, very dangerous thing because that means you’re raising your taxes higher than the rate of inflation.”

Voting is open until 9 p.m. at Northport Village Hall.

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