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02/05/19 6:00am
02/05/2019 6:00 AM

It was February, 1980. The United States Olympic ice hockey team surprised the world by upsetting the team from the Soviet Union in the semifinal round. As the clock was winding down at the end of the game, ABC sportscaster Al Michaels delivered, perhaps, the quintessential call ever at a sporting event, “Do you believe in miracles?!”

You can bet Greenport High School sports faithful are believers. (more…)

11/03/17 6:00am
11/03/2017 6:00 AM

Southold Town Assessor
Four-year term, two open seats
Salary: $76,707

Damon Peter Rallis

Occupation: Civil servant, Southold Town building department

Hamlet: Southold

Party lines: Democratic

About him: Mr. Rallis, 43, is a North Fork native and a 16-year employee of Southold Town. He lives in Southold with his wife, Joanna, and their two sons, Luca, 13, and Destin, 9. He is a Boy Scout Leader for Pack 51 and Troop 51 and a member of Peconic Lodge No. 349 of Free & Accepted Masons.

His pitch: Mr. Rallis said that as code enforcement officer and building plans examiner in the town building department he is the “only candidate who not only meets but exceeds the qualifications necessary to successfully perform the duties of Assessor and will be ready to hit the ground running on day one.” He said he is running with no special interests and no conflicts of interest. He points to his experience and “a verifiable record of a fair and balanced approach” to work with the people of Southold and enhance the Board of Assessors.

In his words: “A vote for me ensures success and stability in the Assessor’s office during this time of transition. I have always been there for the people of Southold and will continue to be if elected. I am proud to be endorsed by the LI Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, based on my commitment to the working families of Southold.”

Kevin Webster

Occupation: Southold Town Assessor

Hamlet: East Marion

Party lines: Republican, Conservative, Independence

About him: Mr. Webster, 47, is in his 12th year as a member of the town’s Board of Assessors and currently serves as its chairman. He is a NYS certified assessor with more than 25 years’ experience in the appraisal and assessment industry. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Ithaca College and is a former licensed NYS real estate salesperson and, since 2001, licensed NYS residential appraiser. He is also a state-licensed Notary and belongs to the NYS Assessors’ Association and Suffolk County Assessors’ Association.

His pitch: After graduating from Ithaca College, Mr. Webster moved back to Orient and started working in the fall of 1992 in the assessment, appraisal and real estate field.  He said it was a natural fit for him based on his education and knowledge of the area. The town assessors’ job is administrative, he said. They keep the inventory of more than 18,000 parcels up to date based on changes either through additions to the property or demolitions. In the position, he’s handled changes in ownership, processing new and recurring STAR, firefighter, veterans and agricultural property tax exemptions. Assessors process the town assessment roll, which is used to compute the tax rates that are then applied to a bill for your school, library and fire district taxes, for example.

In his words: “When I was asked to run for my current position in 2005 it seemed like a natural fit based on my 13 years’ experience in this field.”

Charles J. Sanders

Occupation: Town Trustee, associate broker at Town & Country Realty; captain, 42nd Infantry Division, New York Army National Guard

Hamlet: Greenport

Party lines: Republican, Conservative, Independence

About him: Mr. Sanders, 49, has a bachelor’s degree from Taylor University, a Master of Arts degree from Stony Brook University and a Master of Arts degree in history from Norwich University.  He earned his real estate salesperson license in 1999 and his broker’s license in 2005. He has evaluated and sold properties from Laurel to Orient. He was deployed to Afghanistan in 2010 and 2012 and to  Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 2015.

His pitch: The job of assessor is a local government official who estimates the value of real property, Mr. Sanders said. He said he has estimated the value of real property from Laurel to Orient and has translated these estimates into concrete sales throughout the town. He also said he has extensive experience examining building plans and surveys as a Town Trustee for the past four years. “I have exceptional organizational skills as a result of over 18 years serving in the military,” he said.

In his words: “I look forward to hanging up my hat as a real estate professional while shifting these diverse skill-sets to the job of your next Southold Town Assessor. I ask for your vote this Nov. 7.”

01/03/14 7:00am
01/03/2014 7:00 AM

CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Southold town council members James Dinizio (left) and Robert Ghosio at Thursday morning’s inauguration as highway superintendent Vincent Orlando looks on.

Newly elected Southold Town officials were sworn in last Thursday during an inauguration ceremony held at Town Hall.

Southold Supervisor Scott Russell greeted the newly elected officials, who took their oath of office led by Southold Justice Rudy Bruer.

Town Board members James Dinizio and the newly elected Robert Ghosio, formerly a town trustee, were among those sworn in. Mr. Ghozio said he was excited to get involved in issues beyond environmental sensitivity and wetlands.

“I think we have a few good issues this year,” Mr. Ghosio said. “Certainly we hope to resolve the issues with Vineyard 48, which seems to be moving along … and trying to start working towards a resolution to the problems that we have with the amount of deer that we have in town.

“It’s going to be a learning curve for sure. Even though I have been working in the town for seven years, now I get to learn about the other departments I never had anything to do with,” he added.

The Town Board will need to appoint a new trustee to replace Mr. Ghosio. A special election for the final year of the term will then be held in November, said Peter McGreevy. Mr. Russell said the Town Board could even appoint an interim trustee who would then step down to let all non-incumbents vie for the seat in the election.

Incumbent Republican trustees John Bredemeyer, Mike Domino and Charles Sanders were all sworn in, as was assessors Bob Scott and Kevin Webster.

Betty Neville was sworn in as town clerk, a position she has held since 1997.

Justice William Price was sworn in for his ninth term as Southold Town Justice. Fishers Island Justice Louisa Evans was also sworn in.

In a past interview, Mr. Price said this will be his last term serving as town judge.

Former councilman Vincent Orlando was sworn is as highway superintendent just in time for the impending snowstorm.

“I’m looking forward to getting the first snowstorm under my belt,” Mr. Orlando said.

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11/02/13 2:01pm
11/02/2013 2:01 PM


Four-year term, two open seats
Salary: $72,638

Marie A. Domenici
Hamlet: Mattituck
Occupation: Self-employed consultant
Party line: Democratic

About her: Ms. Domenici, who declined to give her age, said she has a wide range of business experience in both the private and public sector. A Mattituck resident, she worked for a Fortune 500 company for 15 years and later for an alternative energy startup. After leaving the startup, she was hired as an office manager and legislative aide to New York State Assemblyman Marc Alessi. She is the former chair of Southold Town’s renewable energy committee and also served on the Town’s stormwater run-off committee and the Citizen’s Committee for a Comprehensive Plan for Southold Town. Two years ago, she ran unsuccessfully on the Democratic line for a seat on the Town Board.

Her pitch: Ms. Domenici said her first priority is community collaboration and satisfaction. If elected, she hopes to organize educational meetings to inform the community about the way the assessor’s office functions.

In her words: “What I bring to this position is the ability to communicate and collaborate well with people. I am the candidate who will bring creative ideas and fairness to the office of the Assessor.”

Terry Hofer
Hamlet: Southold
Occupation: Interior stylist, self-employed
Party lines: Democrat

About her: Ms. Hofer, 59, moved to the North Fork as a child in 1964 and has lived most of her life here, raising two children in the Mattituck-Cutchogue community. She is a former owner of the Down Home Store in Cutchogue, which she operated for seven years. She later enrolled in adult education and went to work for Crate & Barrel, where she was quickly promoted to assistant manager at the national retailer’s flagship store on Madison Avenue in New York City and later worked as store manager at a location in Westchester. Her civic and community volunteer experience includes service as a member of the Southold Historical Society, a Community Action Southold Town volunteer and as a member of the Harvest Gospel Choir of the East End Arts Council.

Her pitch: Ms. Hofer believes her experience as a small-business owner and a manager of a major retailer makes her an ideal candidate for assessor. She says she has the interpersonal skills and the ability to build and develop relationships necessary for the job.

In her words: “I’m approachable, hard-working, detail-oriented, decent and experienced.”

Robert I. Scott Jr.
Hamlet: Orient
Occupation: Incumbent Southold Town Assessor
Party lines: Republican, Conservative and Independent

About him: Mr. Scott, 65, is a Greenport High School graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Davis and Elkins before serving as an officer in the U.S. Army. A past president of the Greenport Rotary, he lives with his wife in Orient. He spent 18 years working as a real estate broker. He has been a member of the Orient Fire Department for 29 years, including 14 as chairman and three as a commissioner of the fire district. He was the department’s Fireman of the Year in 2003. Mr. Scott has served six terms as a Southold Town Assessor and is the office’s current chairman. In 1993 he was granted the New York State designation of Certified Assessor Advanced. He has also served as president of the Suffolk County Assessors Association. If re-elected, he said this would be his final term.

His pitch: Mr. Scott believes his experience, and that of his running mate, Kevin Webster, should be strongly considered when casting a vote this Election Day. He pointed to their first-hand knowledge of the day-to-day business of an assessor as key differences between them and their opponents. He said maintaining a level of continuity is important in an office where another longtime assessor already retired earlier this year.

In his words: “Kevin Webster and I have tried to continue the ‘open door’ accessibility to all the public when it comes to assessment questions — whether it’s agricultural, senior citizen or STAR exemptions, deeds, estimates on future construction, etc. It is our hope to be seen as uniform and fair in any assessment situation.”

Kevin W. Webster
Hamlet: East Marion
Occupation: Incumbent Southold Town Assessor
Party Lines: Republican, Conservative and Independent

About him: Mr. Webster, 43, grew up in Orient and graduated from Ithaca College in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He has lived in East Marion with his wife and son for the past 15 years. He worked for 14 years in the appraisal, real estate and assessment industry, completing the New York State real estate sales agent and appraisers’ courses in that time. He has been a member of the East Marion Fire Department since 2004 and is currently its chairman. Mr. Webster was first elected Southold Town Assessor in 2005 and has served two terms.

His pitch: Mr. Webster believes that with the evolution of the job of assessor to include appraisals, exemption and tax return analysis and increased interaction with the public, he and running mate,Bob Scott, are best suited for the position.

In his words: “Our complete knowledge of all hamlets of the town, from Fishers Island to Laurel, allows us to help every one of our homeowners in a personal manner.”

Two-year unexpired term, one open seat
Salary: $72,638

Richard L. Caggiano
Hamlet: Southold
Occupation: Financial analyst
Party lines: Republican, Conservative, Independence

About him: Mr. Caggiano, 64, moved to Southold with his wife, Susan, in 1985. The couple has three children. He studied teaching at St. John’s University and taught in New York City schools. He later changed careers and entered into the financial industry, opening an office in Southold. Mr. Caggiano has served on the Southold school board, the Greenport/Southold Chamber of Commerce, the Southold Town Planning Board, the town supervisor’s Tax Council and the Southold Hamlet Stakeholders.

His pitch: Mr. Caggiano said the assessor position requires interaction with the public on a daily basis, often in a contentious atmosphere, and he believes his 25-plus years of experience in the corporate, small business and governmental sectors qualify him for the job. He said his background includes proficiency in budgeting, forecasting, financial and operational analysis, management, governmental contracting and grants and procurement.

In his words: “Through my years of service, both volunteer and professional, I have developed the ability to be fair, balanced and respectful toward everyone, resulting in successful outcomes.”

Jason A. Petrucci
Hamlet: Southold
Occupation: Food service industry
Party line: Democratic

About him: Mr. Petrucci, 29, is a Mattituck High School alumnus who studied political science as an undergraduate at Drew University and did graduate studies at the University of Maryland. Mr. Petrucci has served on the town’s Conservation Advisory Council, participated in the Blue Ribbon Commission and served as an intern for Comgressman Tim Bishop. He currently works at Friar’s Head Golf Club in Riverhead.

His pitch: Mr. Petrucci said he was surprised to learn that property owners of merged substandard lots in pre-1971 subdivisions are assessed for the value of two separate lots. He believes there needs to be better communication between the assessor’s office and other town departments in order to prevent redundancies and the over-assessment of properties.

In his words: “My long experience [studying] town planning department subject matter and publication procedures gives me a practical perspective that I know the Board of Assessors would benefit from.”