Why I'm Running - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1825500

Why I’m Running

I’m running for Southampton Town highway superintendent. Why? After recently retiring from a 34-year transportation career, I know that the best way to serve my community is as your highway superintendent.

My extensive public and private sector transportation experience makes me uniquely qualified for this important position. In fact, I am the only candidate for highway superintendent with transportation and highway experience. If elected, I will use my highly relevant experience and management skills to significantly improve the transportation network in our community.

From 1987 to 2004, I was a vice president at Hampton Jitney, a multi-faceted transportation company serving Long Island, New York City and other East Coast markets. During the same period, I also served as president of the Southampton Chamber of Commerce and on the Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce board, was appointed by the Town Board to the Southampton Town Comprehensive Plan Committee’s Transportation Task Force, and served on the Southampton Town Business Advisory Council.

In 2005, I was appointed Southampton Town director of intermodal transportation and traffic safety and served in that position for 16 years. In that role, I was executive director of the town’s Transportation Commission and chairman of the East End Transportation Council. My responsibilities included detailed management of numerous regional and town transportation, traffic and roadway projects. In managing these projects, I worked successfully with professional engineers and planners, the Town Board, residents, town departments, outside agencies, and neighboring municipalities.

In about 15 years, the South Fork’s traffic increased by over 50 percent. Traffic congestion has caused greater pollution, increased use of local “back roads,” and more traffic accidents — all issues that must be addressed in a carefully planned, well-researched, thoughtful and cost-efficient manner.

As highway superintendent, I will bring a deep understanding of the issues and proven management skills to plan and implement improvements to the town’s roads, highways and transportation network.

A list of goals that I consider high-priority include: planning, advocating for and implementing select road and intersection improvements; initiating a “Complete Streets” approach to roadway improvements that considers the coordinated needs of pedestrians, bicyclists and vehicles; maintaining open lines of communication and coordination with town residents, the Town Board, other town departments and outside agencies; and implementing ways to reduce the Highway Department’s carbon footprint.

Experienced management of our transportation network is vital to maintaining our quality of life. It is not a skill that can be learned “on the job.” In voting for your town highway superintendent, please do what any intelligent employer would do: Choose the experienced job candidate.

Tom Neely

Sag Harbor