Councilwoman Joan Cergol (D) may have nailed it when she said at the TBR News Media debate that “Huntington is a fantastic town going through some growing pains.”
Both Cergol and her opponent, Republican challenger Jim Leonick, agree that the Long Island Power Authority’s tax certiorari lawsuit against the Town of Huntington and development are key
issues the town will need to grapple with during the course of the next year.
Both agreed that the LIPA lawsuit needs to be thoroughly investigated and every possible stone turned over in looking for a solution. However, it is a problem bigger than any single board member. Whoever fills the seat will have a voice, and one of five votes on a highly divided council, in what happens to the future
development of Huntington.
Cergol, as the town’s former director of the Huntington Community Development Agency, comes with a lot of experience in this area and spoke of the necessity to strike a balance between smart growth, addressing housing needs and requiring developers to provide parking.
Leonick has campaigned against overdevelopment, but didn’t offer any original ideas. He decries the need for increased government transparency, as he did in his 2017 campaign, but only offered that he supported town forums.
We support Cergol on the fact she helps keep the town board politically balanced — it is currently made up of two Republicans, two Democrats and one Independent — while bringing a woman’s viewpoint and a wealth of background experience in community building.
We do think, if elected, she makes good on her and Leonick’s proposal of holding regular town hall forums.