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Jun 25, 2019 1:08 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

New Southampton Village Mayor Says Revitalizing Business District Will Be Priority

Candidates Andrew Pilaro, left, and Mark Parash shake hands with Joseph McLoughlin after they were elcted to the Southampton Village Board on Friday night. GREG WEHNER
Jun 26, 2019 11:42 AM

Residents of Southampton Village who voted in the mayoral and Village Board election on Friday delivered a message: Change needs to occur if the business district is going to survive.

And they got what they voted for—a mayor and two new board members with strong ties to the downtown business district.

After tallying up the votes, which consisted of those submitted on location at the Levitas Center on Pond Lane and numerous absentee ballots, the results pointed to three new faces on the five-member Village Board: newly elected Mayor Jesse Warren, and board members Mark Parash and Andrew Pilaro.

Mr. Warren defeated incumbent Mayor Michael Irving, garnering 450 votes, including 62 by absentee ballot. His opponent collected 405 votes, which included 44 absentee ballot votes.

Mr. Parash and Mr. Pilaro were also elected to seats on the Village Board, with Mr. Parash collecting 643 votes, including 76 absentee ballots, and Mr. Pilaro getting 443 votes, with 55 absentee ballot votes.

Joseph McLoughlin, who was also running for village trustee, collected 433 votes, with 61 absentee ballot votes.

Mr. Warren, Mr. Parash and Mr. Pilaro all either own businesses or hold high positions within a company and ran on platforms based on wanting to see a more vibrant business district in the village. Mr. Warren owns Tenet, Mr. Parash owns Sip’n Soda, and Mr. Pilaro is the president of CAP Properties Limited, a family-operated investment firm.

Their opponents, Mr. Irving and Mr. McLoughlin, ran together, but their support, anchored in the village establishment, appears to have been eclipsed by a younger, more vibrant voting block.

But as the youngest person to ever be elected mayor at the age of 36, Mr. Warren credited his win to a movement that included people of all ages—from high schoolers to residents in their 90s.

“It definitely means that the village was looking for a change, but, really … it was about a team effort, and I don’t think age mattered here,” he said.

“It’s an honor to be the youngest mayor elected. It allows me to provide a different perspective on the way things work, and the take on our current village, and the world, for that matter. But, at the same time, what’s more important to me is having a great team that allowed us to really get to this point, regardless of age.”

Mr. Warren said his campaign started with a small team, which grew through word of mouth, campaigning, knocking on doors and canvasing the entire village. Eventually, the campaign reached a “momentous point,” he said, where people actually believed that Mr. Warren could be elected mayor.

“I think people realized we need a new direction and a new vision for the village, and that we really need to focus on bringing businesses back into the village and making it easy for entrepreneurs and local and other businesses alike, to participate in our village environment,” he said. “We want to communicate to Southampton, and outside of the village, that we want business, we are open to business, and we want you to be here.”

In order to bring vibrancy back to the village, Mr. Warren said he has a meeting set up with the Southampton Arts Center to see what can be done to put more emphasis on the arts. He also said he is reaching out to building landlords with vacant storefronts to find out why the stores are vacant and to encourage them to get them rented.

Mr. Warren said he wants to come up with a much broader plan to attract businesses, residents and visitors alike.

“[Sewers] are definitely part of the plan,” he said. “It’s not just part of the plan because we need it for our business district, but now … it’s part of the overall environmental plan.”

Mr. Parash and Mr. Pilaro did not respond to requests to speak about their wins on Tuesday.

After the results were read late Friday night by Eileen Musarra, the deputy clerk for the village, Mr. Irving and Mr. Warren had a brief conversation, during which, Mr. Warren said, Mr. Irving was gracious and offered to assist him with the transition, because he cares about the village.

“That’s why he did the job in the first place,” Mr. Warren said. “I am looking forward to working with Mr. Irving.”

On Friday night, Mr. Irving said elections give people in the community an opportunity to speak, and this time they said they thought Mr. Warren could do a better job.

The past two years, he said, have been a lot of work, and now he is looking forward to being able to go to the grocery store and not get stopped by constituents. He added that he does not plan to seek office in the future.

He added, “It was an absolute honor to represent the village.”

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Will have to gain support for a sewer district - whether utilizing SH Hospital's STP or building a new one elsewhere. Without a sewer district in Southampton you will not see an influx of businesses: wet uses are needed to allow for cafe's, restaurants, ice cream shops, and brick and mortar dry retail is a dying industry. Westhampton Beach secured grant money and is in process - Patchogue is revitalized (not saying SH should be Patchogue) and flourishing. Even shopping malls across America are re-purposing ...more
By Mouthampton (436), Southampton on Jun 27, 19 9:10 AM
1 member liked this comment
I agree. Without the sewer district SHV will spin it's wheels forever as its been doing since the recession converged with E.commerce.
By lursagirl (241), southampton on Jun 27, 19 9:34 AM
I agree about the sewers.There is already way too much nitrogen loading to the estuary. You may not care that the way of life of the Shinnecock is threatened, but clean water is a big draw for most people in southampton. Or do you not go to the beach???

Business activity that puts nitrogen into the aquifer is doomed to fail.
By deKooning (106), southampton on Jun 27, 19 11:25 AM
Who is going to pay for the sewer district the will service businesses that charge
high rents. Adding rental units above stores will increase the amount of sewage.
When will the residents be able to use the sewage system???
As for restaurants, most can not run year round. Not a good investment in these times. The jobs la, windmill la and northsea rd area is not good for restaurants because of the water tables. Our family sold the homestead on windmill because of the water problems ...more
By knitter (1893), Southampton on Jun 27, 19 11:37 AM
2 members liked this comment
Exactly, knitter. Who pays to construct the system?
Here in WHB, though grant $ is being awarded which is great, we still don’t know the sewer system construction costs. The bids are not in. Only 158 properties (mostly on Main Street) will get to use the sewer system. But all taxpayers are expected to help with construction costs that grant money doesn’t cover.
One little WHB Main Street project that was expected to last 8 weeks and be completed by Memorial Day is still ongoing ...more
By st (128), westhampton beach on Jun 27, 19 2:49 PM
1 member liked this comment
Turn Jobs Lane into an attractive walking and biking destination by BANNING CARS AND PARKING much like Times Square NYC and Burlington Vt. Outdoor malls are vibrant and a focal point in progressive communities. A pilot test can be done easily. Right now it’s bumper to bumper SUV’s and uninviting.
By Non-Political (124), Hampton Bays on Jun 27, 19 12:06 PM
1 member liked this comment
And where will we park to access jobs lane??? That would be alot of parking lost and quite frankly I dont have the time to walk 3 blocks which means I will shop elsehwere....

By toes in the water (884), southampton on Jun 28, 19 6:39 AM
Where exactly is the sewage plant to go???
Where do they want to park cars, if not on jobs la???
Where is the money coming from???
Where is the SA on the pollution on our precious waters? Next out bays and oceans???
Where is the Village Board banning these fertilizers that have been polluting our ponds for years and years???
Mike, Nancy,Rich and Bill, pass it before you get out......
By knitter (1893), Southampton on Jun 27, 19 4:20 PM
1 member liked this comment
Yaz isn’t going anywhere.
By Draggerman (940), Southampton on Jun 27, 19 6:18 PM
How about getting the police to enforce the no bicycle riding on Main Street and Jobs Lane. The ordinance enforcers just look at them as they ride by.
By metsfan2 (159), southampton on Jun 27, 19 9:35 PM
2 members liked this comment
How about giving the Trustee Roads back to the Town Residents and Freeholders?
By bigfresh (4590), north sea on Jun 27, 19 9:48 PM
Congratz and Good Luck Mr. Warren!
By Summer Resident (246), Southampton Town, NY on Jul 1, 19 12:51 AM
Any information on swearing in ceremony and appointments?
By metsfan2 (159), southampton on Jul 2, 19 5:56 PM
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