Former Southold Supervisor Josh Horton enters race for Greenport Mayor

02/08/2011 1:20 PM |
Former Sothold Supervisor Josh Horton will run for Greenport mayor.

SUFFOLK TIMES FILE PHOTO | Former Sothold Supervisor Josh Horton will run for Greenport mayor.

Former Southold Town supervisor Josh Horton emerged Tuesday as a surprise candidate for Greenport mayor, seeking to unseat incumbent David Nyce. Until this past weekend, it appeared that Mr. Nyce would be running unopposed for a second four-year term.

Not only did Mr. Horton step forward to run against the mayor, but he did so with a ringing endorsement from Trustee Michael Osinski, who decided at the last minute not to seek re-election.

“I’m happy Josh is running; we need a stronger character as mayor,” Mr. Osinski said in an interview Tuesday night. He ran as part of Mr. Nyce’s team four years ago but in recent years the two have frequently clashed at Village Board sessions.

The retiring trustee charged that Mr. Nyce had been too soft on village employees.

Mr. Nyce said in a separate interview Tuesday night that employees have been treated fairly and equitably.

“They’re not getting away with murder,” the mayor said. “I will stand by what I’ve accomplished in the last four years under very difficult circumstances at the outset,” he said, referring to village debt of more than $13 million that his administration inherited.
“I know that I can make a significant difference,” Mr. Horton said of his decision to run against the mayor, a man he calls a friend. “The village needs decisive leadership and I can provide that.”

Will Mr. Horton commit to serving a full four-year term if elected, given previous rumors that he was interested in running for Sen. Kenneth LaValle’s seat should the state senator step down in two years?

“Absolutely,” Mr. Horton said. “I’m a homebody and I want to make a difference in the community in which I live,” he said, maintaining that he turned aside a previous chance to run for a New York State Assembly seat.

Mr. Osinski said he decided not to seek re-election because he wanted to have more time for his family and business without feeling guilty about pending village business.

For months, it had been expected that Mr. Osinski wouldn’t run based on his own statements, but a few weeks ago he took out a petition and said he intended to seek re-election.

His decision leaves three candidates — Trustee George Hubbard Jr., former trustee Bill Swiskey and Historic Preservation Commission chairman David Murray ­ — seeking two trustee seats.

In recent statements, Mr. Nyce has listed among his achievements securing $9 million in federal stimulus funds for an upgrade to the village wastewater treatment plant, laying the groundwork to launch major upgrades to the electric plant and helping to reduce village debt from over $13 million to $9.8 million, which includes $1.5 million of new borrowing for the wastewater treatment plant project.

The mayor has credited the sale of Clark’s Beach and grants secured during the administration of Dave Kapell for some of the debt reduction. But he has also taken credit for good fiscal management that has contributed to having more money to pay down the debt.

Mr. Horton said he wants more emphasis on creating year-round jobs in Greenport and that can “only be accomplished with vision.”

As for balancing his schedule, including his rock band and managing the Corcoran Group’s Southold real estate office, Mr. Horton said he travels with his band only about once every six weeks, on weekends.

“I have a career that I love,” he said of his work with Corcoran. He said both his business and government experience are proof of his ability to tackle the demands of the mayor’s job.

Voters will have the final say on election day, Tuesday, March 15, when polls will be open at the Third Street firehouse from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The Suffolk Times is hosting a candidates’ forum at Greenport United Methodist Church on Thursday, March 3, at 7 p.m.

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31 Comment

  • Oh Josh, please, no more.

  • give me a break.

  • He will do a great job. Go for it Josh!

  • Please get a job that doesn’t requiring promoting yourself under the auspiciousness of serving our community.

  • Motion to Intervene!
    Support the expose Josh Horton as a opportunist.
    Hopefully Greenporters will not believe his campaign promises

  • What, the real estate selling business didn’t go as planned? The rock star concert promoter business didn’t go as planned? So now we’re going back on the public dole? No thanks.

  • Josh for mayor…. where do I send my contribution!

  • Even though I’m not a greenport resident, I would hope Mayor Nyce is reelected and given a chance to follow through for the village. No need to put an egomaniac into the driver’s seat.

  • The absolute worst Southold Town Supervisor in recent history is now running for mayor in Greenport? God help us

  • I think Josh Horton would make a great Mayer in any town. He brings a lot to the table . In a town such as Greenport we need a man who possesses the strong qualities of leadership holding a sharp sense of what the people of Greenport want and need! You have my vote Josh!

  • I think you should not be allowed to vote for mayor until you can spell mayor.

  • I hope he has matured since he served as Town Supervisor. He had absoultely no interest in listening to people who didn’t agree with him and overstepped the boundaries of his power to get rid of them. He acted like a little kid who threw a fit when he didn’t get his way. Bad for Southold-bad for Greenport.

  • Running for mayor? You ARE Joshin’ me, right?

  • Isn’t this photo from when Horton was at odds with Southold Town about last year’s music festival over an attendance discrepancy between the 800 per day on the permit application and the 15,000 a day in the vendor sales material? Based on that performance, some people might say that 95% of his campaign promises should be taken with a grain of salt, including the number of private sector jobs he’s going to create, for which he has no track record.

  • Auspices.

  • Nyce deserves another term.

  • So let me get this straight: Horton is supervisor during the boom years and now that is supposed to make him qualified to run the village in a recession? he cashed out of public service and decided to ride the real estate gravy train for awhile but now that has dried up. decided to be a concert promoter in order to stoke the fires of his own music “career” and that is supposed to make him qualified to bring “year round jobs” to Greenport? as what? being his roadie/promoter/groupie? lied about concert numbers to the town, lied to vendors. either way it was doublespeak to advance his agenda and then he blamed it on a typo. so what happens when he fudges the numbers in the budget? will that be a typo too? he will say to look at his record from when he was supervisor to attest to his abilities for mayor. but don’t overlook his record as a private businessman in this town either.

  • that homebody also manages the Shelter Island and Westhampton Beach offices for Corcoran.

  • I am proud to have Mayor Nyce represent our village. He has shown he not only cares a great deal about the best interests of Greenport, but has the record to prove it. In a world of politics as usual, it’s refreshing to have a leader at the most important level of government–the local level–that can handle the job. My wife and I will certainly be voting again for David Nyce.

  • Josh who? Never heard of the guy. It’s all about re-electing Nyce in order to keep this town prospering and promising.

  • I am disappointed with the way Mr. Osinski has conducted himself. His comment about David Nyce was not only inaccurate, it was in poor taste.

  • There are quite a few of us that remain unsatisfied with Mr. Horton’s explanation of why he abandoned a rather secure run as Town Supervisor (and Police Commissioner!). Suspicions linger…and will he up and leave when another “opportunity” knocks?

  • hmmmm “need a stronger character” is an interesting endorsement as Mr. Horton appears to be quite the character and for some reasons his character may indeed be in question. Perhaps before his hat enters the ring he might care to comment on a persistent rumors. I dunno but it suspect that Mr. Horton has enough going for him in the baggage car to delay the train.

  • I wonder if Josh just wants a “step-in” venue of the park for one of these music jigs?

    Beyond that, Josh certainly does not have to be mayor in order to contribute to the Village. If he would like to create year-round, private sector jobs, go for it – that has nothing to do with village politics. Hey, however the vote comes out, bring on the jobs Josh!

  • Josh Horton is out of touch and thinks reality revolves around himself.

    Remember when he was first elected as Supervisor and he fired everybody? He never followed thru on his promise to reform Southold Town government, instead he reversed progress and reverted to the bad old days of autocratic rulers.

    And remember when Supervisor Horton invited the Federal Homeland Security to the North Fork? Something about a terrorist denying Cross Sound Ferry the right to turn the Main Road into an interstate highway!

    He says he was told by former Southold supervisor Josh Horton that if he intended to do anything in Riverhead he should be prepared for “a nightmare.”
    Instead, he’s had the opposite experience.
    Former Frisky Oyster restaurateur Dennis Mc Dermott

    When you’re elected, you’re given the very sacred right to appoint people who share your point of view,” Supervisor Horton said.

  • “Josh Horton is out of touch and thinks reality revolves around himself.”

    Hey, ind of like you!

  • “Josh Horton is out of touch and thinks reality revolves around himself.”

    Hey, ind of like you!

  • The Putz already quit!

  • The only reason Cockrun hired him was for his name. He brings nothing to the table, I’m not surprised they clipped his wings!