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Jan 10, 2017 5:11 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

UPDATE: East Hampton Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell Will Not Seek Reelection In Fall, Van Scoyoc Says He Is Considering Run

Larry Cantwell outside East Hampton Town Hall on Friday Michael Wright
Jan 13, 2017 5:55 PM

UPDATE: Friday, 11:30 a.m.

East Hampton Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell announced on Friday morning that he will not seek reelection to a third term in office next fall, ending what will have been 42 years in local government by the time he leaves office in December.

Mr. Cantwell said the decision was a personal one.

"I spent time over the holidays thinking about this decision, weighing different options, part of which was the body of work that I'm very proud we have accomplished or begun over the last three years, and one of the things that weighed heavily on my mind was to continue that work and finish some of the things we've started," Mr. Cantwell said to a small group of reporters he made the announcement to on Friday morning. "In the end, I've reached that point in my life where...well, let me put it this way: I've always believed that as a public official you put the public's interests first. And my personal and private interests have always taken a backseat to that. I want my family's interest to get up in the drivers seat."

Mr. Cantwell said that he plans to work hard for the next 11-plus months to move forward a number of initiatives facing the town and the South Fork. He said top on his priority list will be the creation of a septic replacement program using Community Preservation Fund money and town legislation to spur the removal of cesspools and other obsolete household septic systems and to press the Army Corps of Engineers to commit to a broad reconstruction of the ocean beaches in Montauk.

With a little over 11 months to go in his government career, the former bay constable, town councilman, East Hampton Village adminstrator and town supervisor said he is most proud of the tone of government his adminstration and the board members who have served with him have set.

"I feel good about establishing a constructive dialogue among the Town Board members and with the public, which is something that was especially needed after the prior administration," he said of the infamously rancorous board that preceded his election and the securing of a Democratic Party super-majority in 2014. "I think the Town Board is focused on the problems as opposed to political gamesmanship and I think the public respects that and as a result the public is more engaged in helping us make some of these decisions. I think you can argue with decisions we've made but I think you'd be hard pressed to argue that we haven't set a tone of cooperation."

Mr. Cantwell won election to his first government post, as Bay Constable, in 1975 when he was just 25 years old. A year later he was elected to the Town Council, part of the first-ever Democratic majority on the Town Board. He was reelected in 1980, though he stepped down midway through the term to take a job as East Hampton Village Administrator, a post he held for 33 years.

Mr. Cantwell said he would expect one of the three other incumbent Democrats on the Town Board—Peter Van Scoyoc, Sylvia Overby and Kathee Burke-Gonzalez—to step in and run for supervisor. Ms. Burke-Gonzalez said she plans to seek reelection to her Town Council seat. Mr. Van Scoyoc, who is midway through his second four-year term on the board, said on Friday that he is considering seeking the supervisor's seat.

Original Story:

East Hampton Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell will announce this Friday whether he will run for reelection to a third term in the supervisor’s office.

Mr. Cantwell said that he will inform local news media of his decision in a private conference on Friday morning.

After more than 30 years in local government—he served on the Town Board in the 1980s and worked as the East Hampton Village administrator for 30 years before retiring from that position in 2013—there have been rumblings in political circles that Mr. Cantwell, a Democrat, would not seek another term.

He won reelection to his second two-year term as supervisor in 2015 with more than 68 percent of the vote, over Republican candidate Tom Knobel, as part of a Democratic Party sweep of the three Town Board seats this year.

Earlier this month Councilman Fred Overton, formerly the lone member of the GOP on the board, but now registered with the Independence Party, said he would not seek reelection to a second four-year term.

Councilwoman Kathee Burke-Gonzalez’s seat on the board will also be on the ballot this fall. She is expected to seek reelection.

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How does one go about running for public office in East Hampton Town?
By Rich Morey (263), East Hampton on Jan 10, 17 5:25 PM
You're asking that question to a comments section?
By adlkjd923ilifmac.aladfksdurwp (294), southampton on Jan 13, 17 2:04 PM
Here are the steps which are actually on the Town's Website:

1.) Put your ethics in a shoe box and send it out to sea a Main Beach
2.) Give bank deposit slips to all of the building contractor and any other blue collar lug with an airplane.
3.) Spend, Jenkins, Spend
By SlimeAlive (370), Southampton on Jan 13, 17 2:32 PM
That's Southampton...home of Marietta Seaman's special brand of back door dealings. East Hampton is not as greasy as y'all, thank heavens.
By em (42), sagaponack on Jan 13, 17 4:55 PM
You should get in touch with the local political party that you are affiliated with. They will be able to walk you through the steps.
By IJ Meyer (1), East Hampton on Jan 13, 17 5:08 PM
You need to be affiliated with a local political party? Ewwww!
By VOS (871), WHB on Jan 13, 17 5:52 PM
"Mr. Cantwell said to a small group of reporters he made the announcement to"

The White House Press Corps wasn't there? How many reporters could possibly care?
By fire11 (246), east hampton on Jan 13, 17 10:41 PM
The next Supervisor is right under the Republican and Democrat noses - it's Alex Walters. A former Wilkinson apponted head of the Planning Board, Walters was brought in by Cantwell because he said he needed an Executive Assistant. In reality, every single person in Town Hall knows he is the one that has done all the heavy lifting in the last three years. The only problem is that, I believe, he does not have a "D" next to his name for party affiliation so the local party may defer to the lesser ...more
By pluff (13), East Hampton on Jan 14, 17 8:32 AM