Even before Election Day, 2013 was a year of change on the Southold Town political landscape.
The season of change began when Town Board member Al Krupski won a special election in January to fill the vacant North Fork seat in the county Legislature. It continued when Assessor Darline Duffy retired this June after 22 years in office. Throw in the decision of Highway Superintendent Pete Harris and Councilman Chris Talbot to not seek re-election, Trustee Bob Ghosio’s pursuit of a Town Board post and the Republican Party’s decision to not re-nominate Judge Bill Price and Trustee Dave Bergen, and change becomes an even bigger theme this year.
But even with change, some things remained the same. Republicans strengthened their hold on town politics, emerging from Election Day controlling all five seats on the Town Board. And with Republicans Charles Sanders earning a Trustee position, and Vincent Orlando’s stepping into the highway department superintendent post, Justice Price will be the only Democratic-backed candidate in town office come January.
There is even a new face representing the North Fork in the state Assembly, following Dan Losquadro’s departure to the Brookhaven Town Highway Department: Anthony Palumbo, an attorney from New Suffolk, defeated John McManmon of Aquebogue to win the special election this November.
Of course, 2014 could be a season of change, too. The Southold Town Board is expected to soon appoint someone to fill Mr. Ghosio’s seat on the Board of Trustees, with a special election in the fall to complete the term. And on the federal level, Congressman Tim Bishop is facing an aggressive challenge from state Senator Lee Zeldin of Shirley.
The lawn signs will be back before you know it.
Editor’s note: We’re counting down the top 10 news stories of 2013. Check back every day until Jan. 1 to follow along.