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198 Comments by fidelis

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Kabot won't appeal to Board of Elections

Just when we thought it was safe to think of Nancy Graboski as a hard-working public servant with a low political profile, she goes ballistic, calling the Democrats "hypocritical, disingenuous, underhanded sneaks" just for trying to have the law obeyed. One doesn't expect intemperate language like this from Ms. Graboski; the pressure on her friend Linda must be getting to her.

SHNative has it just right, in both comments. As she points out, this failed petition, like the financial disaster, is part of the typical Linda Kabot pattern of making a mistake and then ducking responsibility for it. The real problem is what SHNative rightly calls the "millions of dollars missing in town hall." If there was ever a case for throwing the rascals out, this is it." Sep 2, 09 12:19 PM

Nuzzi seeking to professionalize appointed boards

Chris Nuzzi can't seem to stop tinkering with the appointed boards, but it's all cyincal maneuvering scripted by the political bosses whose voice he is. Since Councilman Nuzzi is runing for re-election this year, he has to do something to show the voters he has a pulse (which you couldn't tell from watching Town Board meetings, though maybe the camera's not kind to him), but he and his minders really should try something that's not such a blatant power grab.

Back in December, he tried to cut the boards from seven to five members, but backed off when Sally Pope and others exposed his "economizing" rationale as a mini-drop in the ocean of red ink the Republicans have bled, and also invoked the need for wide representation of the people, not the developers.

What the opponents didn't point out, but should have, was that the December Nuzzi proposal was in fact a move to avoid re-appointing two inconveniently principled members of the Planning Board, Alma Hyman and Jaqui Lofaro, who had voted, unsuccessfully, to require an environmental review of the Woodfield Gables project, over a plume of contaminated water in Speonk. (See Press editorial, "Shameful Decision", 9/11/08.) Since their terms were the next to expire, they would have been the first to go under the Nuzzi cut.

Now Councilman Nuzzi, taking another tack, wants to "professionalize" the appointed boards and reduce their terms by more than half. The professionalizing approach was rejected some time ago by the Town Board, again on the basis that the public, not the professionals, needs a voice on these bodies, especially when there are ample paid professionals in the Town departments to consult. One could say that this is just a band-aid measure, and that the problem, with the Planning Board at least, won't be fixed until public input is required to be heard before any environmental decision is made, as Ms. Pope has been saying for a long time.

But that wouldn't be the whole story. What's really happening is that the Republican organization sees a Democratic sweep coming in November (a good guess), and the Nuzzi ploy represents damage control on their part -- let the Democrats win and appoint people, but at least their appointees won't hold office for so long.

This is important to the Republicans, as many of their major supporters have business before these boards, and they need a receptive climate. Chris Nuzzi has always done everything he can to provide that climate, which has produced the Planning Board disasters of Woodfield Gables, Water Mill Station, Oakland Farms, and Trumpets catering hall. If that's what you want, stick with Chris Nuzzi in November. If not, he should go." Sep 2, 09 3:18 PM

CORRECTION: In the above comment, "Alma Hyman" should read instead "Blair McCaslin". " Sep 2, 09 8:49 PM

More residents oppose the Water Mill cell phone tower

Good luck relying on this Planning Board to stop, or even slow, the installation of a 77-foot cell phone tower in Water Mill. Residents will recall the debacle of the Water Mill Station, which the same planning Board OK'd, despite their fervent protests. Chairman Finnerty says the Board is "leaning toward requiring . . . an extensive environmental review" of the tower project, but this Board has "leaned' before, first one way and then the other, a sort of head fake. They've given us Woodfield Gables in Speonk, Oakland Farms in Quiogue, Trumpets catering hall in Eastport, and of course, Water Mill Station. In each instance, the Planning Board unheedingly passed on an environmentally unsound project over strong community opposition.

This is the way it goes in Southampton Town. The Planning Board is a key element in the Republican power structure, rubber-stamping the applications of the development interests that prop up the Party. It is so important that the Republican bosses, sensing defeat in November, have tapped their willing instrument, Councilman Chris Nuzzi, to introduce a measure to reduce the terms of the appointed boards, so that Democratic appointees will not be in office for too long. (See 27east article, "Nuzzi Seeking to Professionalize Appointed Boards" and comment, 8/26/09.)

This isn't the first time Chris Nuzzi has done the bidding of his principals to tighten the already firm Republican grip on the Planning Board. In December of last year, he sought to cut the membership from seven to five, a measure which would have eliminated two uncooperative members who actually had the temerity to represent the public rather than the special interests. A majority of the Town Board saw through this ruse masquerading as economy, and Councilman Nuzzi withdrew it.

But they never give up. Nuzzi and the organization are at it again, with his current transparently political proposal to shorten the appointed board terms. With any luck, this maneuver, like the last one, will be defeated by Sally Pope and other responsible members of the Town Board.

The moral for Water Mill residents is, don't look for any help from the Planning Board or Chris Nuzzi in fighting against the cell phone tower. You're on your own, so get out to that next hearing on October 8 and let them hear from you. They may ignore you as in the past, but at least you'll be buuilding the case against them. Then again, they may just listen and do the right thing. " Sep 2, 09 9:52 PM

T-Mobile wants to build cell tower in Speonk

Look out, Speonk! This is one of two proposals by T-Mobile for 77-foot cell phone towers, the other in Water Mill. Our notoriously development-friendly Planning Board is actually expressing reservations about the Water Mill tower, but thay can't be relied on, as this Board has flip-flopped in the past, almost always coming down on the side of the applicant. (See 27east article, "More residents oppose the Water Mill cell phone tower" and comment, 9/2/09.)

While Planning Board Chairman Dennis Finnerty suggests that an environmental review of the Water Mill tower may be required -- a rarity for a major project -- he disdainfully notes that no Speonk residents showed up for the Board's 8/27 public hearing. Admittedly, these events aren't well publicized, but a lot of Water Mill people did make it, and protested vehemently.

Note, too, that they're spinning the Speonk tower as an installation that will not harm an already downscale neighborhood, a questionable proposition for those who live there, and one that wholly ignores the environmental impact. Bottom line, the Planning Board hasn't even hinted at conducting a serious review of the Speonk proposal, the way it has for Water Mill. Speonk is in big trouble.

A year ago, Sally Pope, then running for the Town Board, addressed another Speonk project that was before the Planning Board, the Woodfield Gables development poised over a plume of contaminated groundwater. (See Press editorial, "Shameful Decision", 9/11/08.) She said then that the Board's procedures had to be changed to require extensive public input before any environmental determination is made. It's the right answer, but it still hasn't happened. Woodfield Gables passed the Board, and so did Trumpets catering Hall, Water Mill Station, and Oakland Farms, all environmental disasters.

In the background, too, is Councilman Chris Nuzzi, trying to still the last independent voices on the Planning Board by undermining or eliminating the minority that stubbornly speaks for the public interest. Chris Nuzzi has sought to do this by introducing legislation that would reduce either the number of board members or their terms of office. He hasn't succeeded yet, but he keeps trying; his proposal to reduce terms by more than half is now before the Town Board. (See 27east article, "Nuzzi Seeking to Professionalize Appointed Boards" and comment, 8/26/09.) All this maneuvering is orchestrated by the Republican bosses who call the tune for Mr. Nuzzi -- they need a compliant Planning Board to accommodate the developers who support them, and Chris Nuzzi is a willing tool.

None of this bodes well for Speonk. A Planning Board with a gruesome record of trampling on legitimate public concerns is ready to approve a 77-foot monstrosity in Speonk without so much as a nod to the impact on the environment or the community. Those few on the Planning Board who might act in Speonk's behalf are threatened by Chris Nuzzi's legislative stiletto. The community has failed so far to protest, and this is its only chance to defeat the tower. Look out, Speonk!" Sep 3, 09 12:36 AM

Throne-Holst and Nuzzi score PBA endorsements

It makes sense for the PBA to endorse Anna Throne-Holst, but Chris Nuzzi? All he's ever done for the police is to follow Ms. Throne-Holst's lead. It was she, not Chris Nuzzi, who spoke up against forced retirement at the public hearing last year. (See 27east article, "Southampton PBA protests forced retirement" 8/26/08.) The measures for vehicle impoundment and nuisance night club payments were hers, and all Nuzzi did was jump on the bandwagon. (See 27east article, "Councilwoman wants to crack down . . .", 7/29/09.) Actually, I thought the night club payments were originally Sally Pope's idea, but I could be wrong.

Indeed, Mr. Nuzzi is good at following. He regularly follows instructions from the local Republican organization, and this backing of Ms. Throne-Holst may just be another such instruction. It goes like this: the Republican bosses are deeply unhappy that Linda Kabot forced them to back down from their cynical nomination of Jim Malone for Supervisor and to give it to her instead. As Democratic chairman Gordon Herr declared recently, the bosses want to get rid of Ms. Kabot but retain a Republican majority on the Town Board. Speaking of Ms. Throne-Holst, he said the Republicans "can live with Anna for two years, but by keeping control of the Board they will essentially make her ineffective." (See 27east article, "Independence Party endorsements cause rift", 7/23/09.)

That's the plan, as covertly advanced by Chris Nuzzi and his handlers. The PBA is being played as a pawn in the bosses' back-room game. What the PBA can do about it is unclear, short of withdrawing their endorsement of Mr. Nuzzi. What voters can do is choose Anna Throne-Holst as Supervisor, and give her the tools to do the job by putting Sally Pope and Bridget Fleming on the Town Board, not Chris Nuzzi or Jim Malone. This is more than politics -- it's just common sense to promote action and avoid deadlock by electing people who have a common goal and agree on how to get there. " Sep 4, 09 11:24 AM

Kabot won't appeal to Board of Elections

Mr. Hamptons and MaryMac are a little tough on Linda, but certainly one must bear the consequences of one's actions if one is found guilty. Of course, the old-boy Republican crew will be shedding no tears over this development. They'ver been gunning for Linda ever since she forced a primary and beat Skip Heaney two years ago.

This year the Republicans denied her their nomination even though she was a sitting Supervisor of their own party, givng the nod instead to Conservative Party chairman Jim Malone. Then, when Linda got enough signatures to force another primary and probably beat Malone, the bosses backed down and gave her their blessing, demoting Malone to a Town Board candidate. The understanding was that Linda would also get the Conservative Party line, but they double-crossed her when the Conservatives announced that they would endorse no one for Supervisor.

Democratic Party chairman Gordon Herr nailed it when he said the Republicans want to get rid of Kabot, and declared that they can live more easily for two years with Democratic candidate Anna Throne-Holst as Supervisor, as long as they keep a Town Board majority to render her ineffective. (See 27east article, "Independence Party endorsements cause rift", 7/23/09.) There are good reasons involving government failures not to vote for Linda Kabot, but for the Southampton Republicans, it's all about power, not good government.

So now voters who can't overlook the DWI charge or the Kabot failures are left with only two Republican-line balllot choices: Jim Malone, leader of the double-crossing Conservative Party, and Chris Nuzzi, who has done nothing in four long years on the Town Board except faithfully mouth the prepared GOP script. Not a pretty picture, but folks who can overcome their reluctance to vote Democratic across the board can go for Throne-Holst, Pope and Fleming, a unified team with an agreed action plan. Any other choice just about guarantees government gridlock, which is the last thing Southampton needs now.

BTW, MaryMac, judging by her comments, seems to be caught between Attila the Hun and the LOSER for Supervisor. Hard stuff." Sep 8, 09 11:44 AM

Just check out what former Supervisor Skip Heany has to say about Linda elsewhere this week, if you doubt that the man is still nursing a giant grudge over her defeat of him two years ago. As stated above, the old-boy Republicans are so hot to get rid of Linda Kabot that they'd rather live with Anna Throne-Holst hobbled by a hostile Town Board. The way to beat that ploy, of course, is to vote Anna in with a supportive Board -- Sally Pope and Bridget Fleming. This vengeful Skip Heaney, by the way, is Chris Nuzzi's rabbi and political mentor. That should tell you something about Chris Nuzzi.
" Sep 9, 09 10:37 AM

Supervisor Kabot will fight DWI charge, stay in race

Turkey Bridge has it right. The establishment Republicans have been gunning for Linda Kabot ever since she brought down Skip Heaney two years ago. This spring they denied her their party's nomination even though she was a sitting Republican Supervisor, giving the nod instead to Conservative Party Chairman Jim Malone. Then, when Linda got enough signatures to force another primary and probably beat Malone, the bosses backed down to avoid that result and gave her their blessing, demoting Malone to a Town Board candidate.

The understanding was that Linda would also get the Conservative Party line, but they double-crossed her when the Conservatives announced that they would endorse no one for Supervisor. This unholy alliance of Heaney Republicans and Conservatives has done all it can to undermine Ms. Kabot, and they really don't mind seeing her stumble now.

Democratic Party Chairman Gordon Herr nailed it when he said the Republicans want to get rid of Linda Kabot and can live more easily for two years with Democratic candidate Anna Throne-Holst as Supervisor, as long as they keep a Town Board majority to render her ineffective. (See 27east article "Independence Party endorsements cause rift", 7/23/09.) There are good reasons involving gross government failures not to vote for Linda Kabot, but for the Southampton Republicans, it's all about power, not good government.

The way to beat this cynical ploy, of course, is to vote in Anna Throne-Holst as Supervisor with a supportive Town Board -- Sally Pope and Bridget Fleming, as a unified team with an agreed action plan. Any other choice just about guarantees government gridlock, which is the last thing Southampton needs now.

One of these organization Republicans, Town Councilman Chris Nuzzi, is up for re-election this year. The behind-the-scenes manipulator of all this backroom intrigue, Skip Heaney, is Chris Nuzzi´s long-time rabbi and political mentor. That should tell you something about Chris Nuzzi. " Sep 13, 09 6:20 PM

Hey golfbuddy: Republican Chairman Marcus Stinchi is not stupid either. He's getting out while the getting is good. See the new piece on his resignation today." Sep 14, 09 1:59 PM

Southampton GOP chairman to step down

Marcus Stinchi is no fool, he just doesn't want to be the general presiding over a monumental defeat. Just look at his candidates -- at the top of the ticket is Linda Kabot, whose personal problems have generated 149 mostly negative comments on this site so far, not to mention her being responsible for the worst financial disaster in the Town's history. Then there's Chris Nuzzi, who has spent four years on the Town Board whispering, passing notes and smirking like a schoolboy when he isn´t appearing to doze off -- occasionally, he does read the script the Republicans feed him just to show that he has a pulse. Finally, we have Jim Malone, who seems not to have done anything in life other than become Chairman of the local Conservative Party, a small and discredited minority. Can you blame Stinchi for taking a powder? Of course, as Ann LaWall says, he'll be there to offer incoming Chair Ernest Wruck "assistance in any way he can", removing the occasional Democratic lawn sign, that sort of thing." Sep 15, 09 1:54 AM

Mr. Wheeler: On Linda Kabot's responsibility for the current financial mess, it is you who has it wrong, not I. Ms. Kabot has been in high positions in Southampton Town Government for the last 13 years. She was Supervisor Vince Cannuscio's right hand as his Executive Assistant from 1996 to 2001. She was a Town Board member from 2001 to 2007. She has been Supervisor herself since 2007. You can't seriously maintain that she doesn't share responsibility for this unfortunate situation. She may not be solely responsible, but she knew, or should have known, what was going on. That's what we pay our high officials for.

Moreover, as we all know, when you are a chief executive, whether of General Motors or the United States or Southampton Town, if something goes wrong on your watch, you own it, you are responsible. It's not always fair -- some get credit that's not due, and some get blame that's not due -- but that´s the way it is, and it applies to Linda Kabot like any other CEO.

That's what I meant by saying Linda Kabot is responsible for the worst financial disaster in the Town's history. Despite what you say, it is neither re-writing history, nor slinging mud, nor a baseless charge, nor a reckless disregard for the truth -- indeed, it is the dismal truth. I understand there may be some sensitivity about the current depressed state of the local Republicans, but don't take it out on those who are simply telling it like it is." Sep 15, 09 5:19 PM

If these folks who think so well of Chris Nuzzi would come to some Town Board meetings and observe, they might think differently. Regarding Mr. Wheeler's comment that "Ñuzzi looks like the class" and "Pope hasn't done much", it would not be a great exaggeration to say, on the contrary, that Sally Pope has done more in eight months on the Town Board than Chris Nuzzi has done in three years and eight months on that body.

Where was Chris Nuzzi when Sally Pope sized up the sad financial situation and called for a State Comprtoller's audit? Probably wondering how much the audit would embarass his godfather, Skip Heaney. (See, Mr. Wheeler, I do recognize that Heaney bears a major share of the blame for the financial crisis.) A better question is, where was Chris Nuzzi during the three years before Sally Pope joined the Board and asked where the money went? Why did't he ask that question in all that time? What was he thinking?

Where was Chris Nuzzi when Sally Pope exposed favoritism in the Highway Department with her questioning of Bill Masterson, which revealed that Masterson had released certain paving contractors from their contractual obligations to the Town, just because the price of asphalt spiked, without getting a thing for the Town in exchange? Probably, if he was awake, thinking that all those Democratic charges of cozy cronyism might just hit home this time.

It was Sally Pope who pointed out that Chris Nuzzi's proposals, to undermine the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals by cutting their membership or terms, missed the point entirely, because these measures did not address the real problem of insuring that the people are heard before any board decision on the environmental aspect is made.

It was Sally Pope who challenged Chris Nuzzi's tactic of trying to amend the dark skies legislation to death by proposing changes late in the game, which changes would generate more and more hearings, thus dragging out the process ad infinitum. It is Chris Nuzzi's notion, by the way, that responsible lighting should be achieved by incentive rather than by regulation. This is like saying that we shoud pay people to stop at traffic lights or observe building codes, or obey the law in general. The comunity should not have to reward people just for doing the right thing, but it seems to be all about rewards for Chris Nuzzi. " Sep 18, 09 10:17 AM

Tim Bishop pushes the House to pass college aid bill

Bishop will be replaced by whom? Which nonentity are the Republicans putting up this time?" Sep 19, 09 8:42 AM

Southampton Town department heads try to dodge layoffs

Let's look at the record. Linda Kabot has held high office in Southampton Town for 13 years. From 1996 to 2001, she was Supervisor Vince Cannuscio´s right hand as his Executive Assistant. From 2001 to 2007, she was a member of the Town Board. Since 2007, she has been Supervisor. Please don't tell me that she merely inherited this mess. Over these 13 years, if she knew what was going on, it's bad, and if she didn't know, it's almost worse. Anna Throne-Holst and Sally Pope asked the questions and saw the problems that Linda Kabot should have long before." Sep 22, 09 4:04 AM

Southampton GOP chairman to step down

Golfbuddy, you need to go to the Town Board meetings in person. The camera catches only half of it. Whern you're actually there, you see Chris Nuzzi being impatient, petulant, somnolent, basically acting as though he'd rather be somewhere else." Sep 22, 09 4:08 AM

Stinchi steps aside, Wruck takes reins of town GOP

Turkey Bridge is naive even to allow for the possiblity that Linda Kabot has acted from any motive other than pure ambition. She's all about power like the other Republicans -- it's just that she took the power away from Skip Heaney, and now he's using the Party organization to try and get it back. That's what all the strife among the Republicans is about, and that's why Marcus Stinchi got worn out, understandably, and why Ernie Wruck is stepping up to the plate.

Progressive? Independent? Nancy Grasboski, maybe, Linda Kabot, no. How about the other Republican Board member, Chris Nuzzi? No way. Mr. Nuzzi merely takes his direction from what Turkey Bridge calls "the core good-old-boy establishment of the local Party".

At this week's Town Board meeting (9/22), it was business as usual, with Chris Nuzzi posing mindless objections to the dark skies legislation, now on its sixth hearing, due mainly to his delaying tactics. This time, questioning a proposal to prohibit continuous nonessential outdoor lighting after midnight, Mr. Nuzzi stood up for "people who want to enjoy their pools" after that hour. One is reminded of a sleepless Tony Soprano by his pool with bathrobe and cigar, musing over his many problems. Give us a break, Chris!

Later in the same meeting, without prior notice, Chris Nuzzi tried to ram through a project to alter Red Creek Road without sufficient examination of the available options. He was challenged on this by Sally Pope, who maintained that an admittedly long-standing need for a cure is still no excuse for ignoring alternatives and going ahead based on a forced consensus.

But Chris Nuzzi had his script, you see, and he was sticking to it. If all the Republicans were as docile as Chris Nuzzi, there would be no quarreling within the Party, and Marcus Stinchi wouldn't have had to resign. A vote for Nuzzi in November is a vote for the same-old, same-old, and that, along with Linda Kabot, is the last thing we need. " Sep 24, 09 11:59 AM

Boy, have you got that right, Mr. Rodney! Suddenly recalling that there's an election coming up, Chris Nuzzi's Republican minders have put a mirror under his nose, discovered that he is still breathing, and now they're frantically feeding him speaking lines in order to demonstrate that fact to the voters.

Until the bosses started jerking the strings to make him jump about, Chris Nuzzi gave new meaning to the term "low profile" on the Town Board. He said little at all, and even less that was memorable, with the exception of his unbelievably ill-advised statement that he prefers the old Skip Heaney way of preparing budgets privately, a preference he emphasized by walking out in protest of a budget meeting that used a more open approach. Given the sorry financial mess that the closed-door Heaney way has bequeathed to us, that fiasco alone should sink Chris Nuzzi in November.

Indeed, the Great Nuzzi Silence seems even more pronounced in comparison to the rest of the Town Board. Contrast Anna Throne-Holst and Sally Pope, both of whom started to speak out assertively, from Day One of their terms, in an effort to find out where all the money went. Contrast also, to give a responsible Republican her due, Nancy Graboski, whose competent, plain-English explanations shed light on many issues, whether one agrees with her or not. Contrast, too, Linda Kabot, who for all her policy failures nevertheless has a command of the procedural and administrative aspects that she uses effectively to keep Board meetings moving and on track.

All along, Chris Nuzzi has seemed pathetically inadequate next to these serious and engaged people. But now we have the new, post-Labor Day Chris Nuzzi, a man transformed by the Republican machine's reflexive survival instinct. Off goes the old alarm clock -- time to get out and campaign, guys -- let's prop up old Chris with some zingers so we can all keep our jobs, our contracts and our old cozy way of doing business. No need to worry about that fifteen million-dollar hole we've left the Town in -- if we give Chris the right lines, he'll put everyone to sleep. He's good that way. " Sep 25, 09 4:36 PM

Thiele leaves Republicans, joins Independence Party

Looks like a two-way street here, Fred Thiele coming in to the Independence Party, and Alex Gregor going out, at least as Southampton chairman. A casual observer might call this a net gain for the party, considering Fred's wattage, but it's puzzling -- why would Fred Thiele join a party that has just repudiated its local leadership in a back-room deal that was unusually cynical, even for politicians?

Here's what went down: Gregor was Independence chair, running for Southampton Highway Superintendent, with Independence and Democratic endorsement. Fine, Independence Party endorses Democratic candidate Anna Throne-Holst for Supervisor, but they balk at backing Democrats Sally Pope and Bridget Fleming for Town Board. Why? Turns out former Republican, now Independence, County Legislator Jay Schneiderman is up for re-election with Dem and Independence backing, wants Republican endorsement, too. What's the price? Simple, Independence endorsement for Republican Town Board candidates Chris Nuzzi and Jim Malone -- do that, & Republicans will bless Schneiderman.

Alex Gregor, a stand-up guy, wants to stick with Dems Pope and Fleming, and the local Independence Party leadership agrees. The county and state bosses, however, both named Frank McKay, a notorious wheeler-dealer and quick pivot man, choose to go with Schneiderman's proposal and cut the ground out from under Gregor and the locals, in blatant violation of a pledge that the local party would make the call. Gregor protests loudly, ultimately resigns as chair, and that's where it stands.

Again, why on earth would Fred Thiele want to get into a snakepit like this? He might think his star power will render him immune from such sordid maneuvering, and he might be right. Still, it's hard to understand how a principled man like Thiele, with a decent record and a future, could associate himself with an outfit like this, unless he means to change it. Good luck to him if he does. " Oct 2, 09 11:45 AM

Answer: No, that's a total fabrication, and those who employ the dishonest tactic of asking the question in order to spread the myth are part of the problem." Oct 4, 09 9:42 AM

Mr. Frank Wheeler, you're wrong. You call Alex Gregor's alleged misconduct "a matter of record". Any record that exists will show a proven, documented respiratory illness at the core of the matter. Also contrary to what you say, other knowledgable Highway Department personnel will confirm that For you to try to transform this into a case of unjustified absence is character assassination." Oct 7, 09 4:00 PM

Kabot arrest leaves nagging doubts

All this yammering about immmigration when the Town is going down the tubes financially is like a drowning man complaining that he he doesn't like the landscaping on the shorefront." Oct 10, 09 10:08 AM

Southampton Town supervisor candidates verbally spar over youth programs, affordable housing in Flanders

The political campaign so far has produced many distinguished nominees, but the Selection Committee has now reached agreement on who should receive the Slime Award for the year 2009. The ommittee has voted unanimously to confer the Slime Award on John McGann, Republican cnadidate for Highwa" Oct 28, 09 12:42 PM

SORRY, INCOMPLETE COMMENT ABOVE. STARTING OVER: The political campaign so far has produced many distinguished nominees, but the Selection Committee has now reached agreement on who should receive the Slime Award for the year 2009. The Committee has voted unanimously to confer the Slime Award on John McGann, Republican candidate for Highway Superintendent, for his stunningly vicious performance at the October 26 FRNCA debate in Flanders. In closing remarks redolent of the gutter, McGann attacked the background of his opponent, Alex Gregor, with the false charge of absenteeism and the distorted charge of business failure. This one-two low blow impressed the Committee, which gave McGann maximum points for both inaccuracy and irony.

The inaccuracy was pointed out by Alex Gregor in response at Flanders, saying that the alleged absenteeism was in fact a documented case of asthma, and freely admitting that a general economic contraction had caused him to wind down one business and join another enterprise with his brother, a move made at some time by many in the business community.

It was really the irony that clinched the Slime Award for McGann. As the Selection Committee declared in its announcement, "It is not so much the character of the Slimee that determines the Award, but the character of the Slimer. Mr. McGann's decadent altar-boy face lent special flavor to the vitriol that he expressed. These accusations against Alex Gregor came from John McGann, a former Town Ethics Board member who approved his campaign workers' use of Highway Department vehicles and premises to solicit on-the-job Highway Department employees to attend a McGann fund-raiser. Some ethics! These accusations came from John McGann, a lifelong law enforcement officer who admitted to stuffing unstamped campaign material in mailboxes, a federal crime. Some law enforcement! Even though the current campaign is not over, we cannot imagine any candidate surpassing John McGann for pure Slime."

Couldn't have said it any better myself.

" Oct 28, 09 1:01 PM

Throne-Holst unseats Kabot as Southampton Town supervisor; Republicans maintain board majority

Hey, Mister Sweetness-and-Light, I hate to rain on your saccharine parade, but aren't you the guy who wrote the sleazy letter to the Press in mid-campaign? You know, the letter calling on Anna Throne-Holst to make public her telephone records in response to the unfounded rumor that someone in the know called her right after Linda Kabot was picked up on a DWI charge? Sure you're the one, it was signed 'Bill Wright' and a very underhanded letter it was, too, starting off with a lot of insincere fluff about both candidates' dedication and integrity (much like the tone of your above comment), and then slipping in the knife real quick with the idea that Ms. Throne-Holst should open her phone records for the night of the alleged "We got her" telephone call.

Of course, you and your Republican handlers knew that neither Anna Throne-Holst nor any intelligent citizen wold comply with such a brazen invasion of privacy, and you also knew that her refusal would lend credence to the rumor in some weak minds. It was a cheap and dirty political trick, exactly the sort of thing that makes many people think politics is a foul business.

You say above, "With the campaigns over, there should be no more 'us versus them' mentality, or backward focus on what may or may not have been done yesterday." Why is it always those who have sinned the most that are most enthusiastic for putting things behind us and moving on? I guess it makes sense that the crowd responsible for the vicious rumors about candidates' personal lives, the chronic tampering with opposition advertising, and the web of lies about Alex Gregor, would want the public to forget the old "us versus them" stuff. Likewise the Republican Party so long in control, the Party whose incompetencce, power-greed and mismanagement finally left the Town in a $20 million hole, would naturally want to avoid "backward focus on . . . yesterday." It makes sense when you think about it.

Bill Wright, I know this unscrupulous letter you wrote is just one incident, but it left such a negative impression on me that I can't let you get away with all the nice-nice, magnanimous, kumbaya pap you're selling in the above comment, without letting the folks know what you have pulled in the very recent past.

You may say my comment reflects some bitterness on the morrow of Election Day, but it's hard to be bitter when my side has captured not only the top office in Town, Supervisor, but also the most -- how shall I say it? -- sensitive office, that of Highway Superintendent, striking a devastating blow at the soft underbelly of the Republican organization. (This is not crowing; it's just a pre-emptive defense against the anticipated charge of sour grapes.)

Bill Wright, this brand-new screen presence (your Comment No. 1 here) with the nice prom picture tells me you are positioning yourself for a run at Anna Throne-Holst's vacant Town Board seat in the special election unless, of course, Ms. Kabot unhorses you once again -- she's done it before. As you go through your motions, just be aware that we're all watching. The Slime Award for 2009 was conferred on John McGann (and look where it got him), but the running for the 2010 Slime Award is wide open. A few more swinish capers like that letter you wrote, and you could be a contender." Nov 4, 09 4:24 PM

Glad you like it, FW, but don't try to sell us that tired old tactic of making the other guy the issue with your transparent question about personal stakes. The answer in any event is no, I don't have any personal stake other than a strong aversion to foul play, especially the hypocritical variety practiced by Bill Wright." Nov 5, 09 3:55 PM

Two meetings of the Southampton Town Board had no quorum

This piece doesn't report any notification by Chris Nuzzi, partial, last minute or otherwise, that he wouldn't show. Apparently, he just stayed in the sack and didn't even try to let people know he wouldn't be there to do his job. " Dec 8, 09 1:09 PM

I didn't miss that part, but I disagree with your interpretation, if you think that the reference to "notification memos" applies to all three named Council members. I don't believe it does. If you read the whole piece, it makes specific references to notifications by Ms. Throne-Holst ("last-minute") and Ms. Pope (for Friday but not Tuesday), but it says nothing about any notification by Mr. Nuzzi. I say again, if you go by what's reported here, the only conclusion is that Chris Nuzzi just stayed in the sack and didn't even try to let people know he wouldn't be there to do his job." Dec 8, 09 4:16 PM

Sunnyside, you don't give a source for your assertion. Terry, you refer to "another newspaper". What I think you're both missing is that we're on 27east here, commenting on this piece above. It's not incumbent on me to know or acknowledge what an unnamed source or "another newspaper" reports. What you're both also missing is that each time you respond, you give me yet another platform to repeat my accusation, which I do now: If you go by what's reported here, the only conclusion is that Chris Nuzzi just stayed in the sack and didn't even try to let people know he wouldn't be there to do his job. " Dec 15, 09 1:01 PM

U.S. Representive Tim Bishop details new initiatives

JimmyKBond and SHNative have it right. Tim Bishop works hard for his constituents, and if it turns out that he works especially hard for those constutuents who need it more, like seniors and uninsured people, good for him, despite the fact that this annoys those who are privileged and unwilling to help those who aren't.

As it happens, Frank Wheeler has it right, too -- unusually -- as regards the name-calling in response to RichardBlumenthal's comment. Note, however, that he doesn't try to defend the substance of the Blumenthal comment. Perhaps there isn't much of a defense to be made." Dec 17, 09 1:05 PM

Special election date set by Southampton Town Board

Nellie of WHERE? You don't seem very well-positioned to be questioning someone else's lack of local experience. What this job requires is competence, wherever it comes from, and Ms. Fleming appears to have that." Jan 11, 10 12:31 PM


It's wholly inaccurate to call my comment a personal attack. You identified yourself as being from "Charleston", a location unknown in the East End, and yet you questioned Bridget Fleming's alleged lack of "LOCAL experience" (your capitals). I simply pointed out the apparent inconsistency between these two components of your statement. Please don't distort my comment.

Moreover, I repeat that what's needed here is competence, which Ms. Fleming possesses in abundance. As far as long-time local background is concerned, Linda Kabot and Skip Heaney have that, and look where they got us." Jan 13, 10 12:17 PM

If you choose to withdraw from the discusion, that's your right, but my comment was based on logic, not personal considerations, and only someone who is exceptionally defensive would call it an "attack", as you did. On the substance, you haven't demonstrated why local experience trumps competence, especially given the dismal failure of the locals Skip Heaney and Linda Kabot." Jan 15, 10 1:15 PM

Southampton Town comptroller reappointment thwarted

Query to "nellie (sag harbor)": Are you the same person who identifies herself as "nellie (charleston)" under the recent piece on the selection of a date for the special election? What's going on here?" Jan 15, 10 1:28 PM

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