Russell: New Southold trustee will likely be a familiar face

CARRIE MILLER FILE PHOTO |Newly elected Trustees took the oath of office in January.
Southold Town trustees taking the oath of office in January. (Carrie Miller file photo)

The Southold Town Board will likely name the newest Board of Trustees member by the end of the month, said Supervisor Scott Russell.

And Mr. Russell said the board would likely appoint a candidate who had already served on the Board of Trustees.

Interviews are now underway and the position could be filled as soon as the board’s next meeting on Feb. 25, town officials said.

Currently, the Board of Trustees has four members, instead of five, because Republican Bob Ghosio won in his bid for Town Board in November and was sworn in January — leaving his seat on the town’s Board of Trustees open.

Without a full Board of Trustees, which is charged with managing the town’s waterways and coastal areas, current members say their workload has increased.

“It is frustrating,” Trustee Jim King said Friday. “They knew four months this was happening. I don’t know what is taking so long.”

Mr. Russell said the Town Board did not want to rush the selection.

“We wanted to give it some time and really think about it,” Mr. Russell said.

In November, Town Board members said they would consider candidates who had previously sought office — namely Democrat Geoffrey Wells, who had lost by a small margin on Election Day 2013 — as well as people with interest and qualifications that have never entered the political arena.

But Mr. Russell on Friday said that wouldn’t be the case, considering the amount of freshmen members on the board.

“There is a few new faces [on the town’s Board of Trustees] so we will probably be looking for someone who is a veteran, who has already been there and is familiar with the landscape,” Mr. Russell said.

Mr. King echoed that sentiment, stating: “It takes one or two years to learn the ropes.”

Whomever the board appoints as Trustee is not guaranteed a spot on the board after 2014. A special election for the final year of the term will then be held in November, Republican Committee chairman Peter McGreevy previously told the Suffolk Times.

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