After weeks of speculation, it appears that the Southold town board seat left empty by Al Krupski when he was elected to the Suffolk County Legislature will be filled at Tuesday night's town board meeting.
On Tuesday afternoon, Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell said after an executive session discussion Tuesday, the board was poised to appoint Jim Dinizio to the position.
Dinizio, Russell said, serves on the Southold Town zoning board of appeals; where he has served "on and off" for over 20 years; he also served as ZBA chairman.
If appointed, Dinizio, a Conservative, will have to run for the seat in November.
This week, Art Tillman, head of the Southold Town Democratic Committee, said that he was disappointed to hear that Democratic candidates were being screened by the Southold Town Republican Committee before being interviewed by the Town Board, which is now all Republican.
“I have told Democratic and independent candidates to submit their resumes to the Town Board who should be doing the screening,” Tillman wrote in an email to North Fork Patch. “To have Democratic candidates screen before the Southold Town Republican Committee is blatantly unfair and partisan politics at its worse.”
Russell said that the board is merely “seeking the guidance of the committee, however the decision will be ours to make when it is said and done,” he said, adding that he has received only two applications from interested Democrats.
“When I was first elected to the position of Supervisor, I was in the minority,” Russell said. “I watched as the Democratic board members made appointments to ZBA and to Planning. I watched as they gave out contracts to do work for the town to their party supporters despite no clear public bidding process…. To suggest that [Democratic candidates] and others were picked randomly by the Democratic board without the Democratic Committee having any input is intellectually dishonest and fools nobody.”
“I have sought guidance and input in the past from the Republican Committee members as I am sure Democratic office holders have from their party committee,” Russell continued. “I asked them what they thought of me appointing Albert Krupski as Deputy Supervisor- their answer: Good Choice. I asked them what they thought of my appointing Leslie Weismann as Chairperson of the Zoning Board of Appeals- their answer- Good Choice.”