Not A Hard Choice
Let’s do a little comparison shopping.
Five people are running for two Southampton Town Council seats in November. Taking them in alphabetical order, let’s look objectively at what each brings to the table:
John Bouvier of Westhampton, the only incumbent, was elected in 2015. An engineer and diver who worked for NASA, his principal accomplishments on the Town Council have been the Septic Rebate Program to help residents replace old systems, investments to prevent surface water contamination, a Water Quality Board to fund improvements, connection to the Suffolk County Water Authority where pollution threatens drinking water, evaluating Community Choice Aggregation to lower electricity costs and allow consumer choice, and measures to reach 100 percent renewable energy by 2025 and become carbon neutral by 2040.
Craig Catalanotto, a Speonk resident and owner of Spire Awards, is vice chair of the Citizens Advisory Council West, a board member of the Speonk-Remsenburg Civic Association, and serves on the Southampton Town Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board. He worked long and hard to bring all parties together on the Speonk Commons affordable housing project and succeeded in reaching a balanced outcome acceptable to all.
Rick Martel is a Hampton Bays native and longtime fixture at Skidmore’s Sporting Goods there. He has been active for many years in the Hampton Bays Little League, the Kiwanis, the San Gennaro Festival, the Chamber of Commerce (where he was a board member), and the Boosters Club (where he was president).
Charles McArdle, a former New York City Police officer, moved to Hampton Bays in 1986. He joined the Southampton Town Police, where he served for 15 years, eight as president of the Patrolman’s Benevolent Association. He is currently president of the Eastern Long Island Police Conference. Mr. McArdle owns two consulting firms in Hampton Bays, providing event security, parking management and permit consulting.
Hannah Pell, daughter of Town Trustee Bill Pell, is a graduate of SUNY Maritime College in Southampton. She has worked as a lifeguard and a logistics coordinator, and is currently employed by CBRE, in real estate sales.
This isn’t a hard choice.
Mr. Bouvier has been working as a town councilman, and doing it very well, for almost four years — he should stay.
Considering the challengers’ backgrounds, Craig Catalanotto’s is by far the best fit. Other candidates may (or may not) have commendable records of community service, but none of them has worked so closely with government as Craig Catalanotto. He’s basically been doing the job of a town councilman without the title.
Done. I’m voting for John Bouvier and Craig Catalanotto on November 5.
Mr. Lynch is treasurer of the Southampton Town Democratic Committee — Ed.
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