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Oct 30, 2009 10:43 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Southampton Town Trustee candidate Chris Garvey (D)

Editor's Note: Seven candidates are seeking seats on the five-member Southampton Town Board of Trustees this year. The five incumbents—Republicans Jon Semlear, Ed Warner Jr., Brian Tymann, Eric Shultz and Fred Havemeyer—are all seeking reelection to another two-year term on the board. They are being challenged by Democratic candidates Bill Pell and Chris Garvey. The Trustees seats are considered part-time and come with an annual $23,900 per year salary for the regular Trustees seats and $30,300 for the president’s seat, which Mr. Semlear has held since 2007. All seven candidate answered a few questions from The Press on topics relevant to the Trustees’ work.

Click here to download a pdf of the Southampton Town Ballot

Oct 30, 2009 10:43 AM

Age: 51

Hometown: Hampton Bays

Occupation: marine insurance

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Political Experience: none

Do you think stormwater runoff is a problem the Trustees should be involved in trying to fix? Why or how?

They have to interface with the highway departments and find scientific ways to sponge up the runoff. When you see water running off from the road into the bay or into a stream you know it’s something you have to attend to. Take Pine Street in Flanders: there’s an old ramp, on Sunday in that rain there was water running off right into the bay. You have to work with the other arms of the government. It’s something that is going to take a concerted effort. When the land starts stirring with the water, you have to cross the line and make friends and find solutions.

Do you think the Trustees can or should be doing more to help the local commercial fishing industry? Why?

Our obligation is to help all residents have access to the bays. That must be done with responsibility and balance. You do what you can, you have to keep a sustainable harvest. The Trustees need to open their doors to other baymen, scientists, legal experts, in order to have those people involved so they get a general consensus on what should be done. My feeling is the door is open but not open as far as it should be.

How should the Trustees be involved in improving water quality in the town’s freshwater ponds?

Freshwater suffers the same demise that the saltwater does. If you have road runoff, if you have sewage plumes, you have to figure how to delete those types of forces. Take it to the people who live near ponds with zero setback. You need 20 or 30 feet. Education is a good thing and I think we should even be talking about giving some sort of a tax break to homeowners if they can prove that they have a healthy vegetative buffer between their house and the water. Give them some sort of incentive.

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The voters should shed 2 of the other incumbent Crustees so that renewed vision may help the tasks ahead.
By fix-it-now (216), sag harbor on Nov 2, 09 1:05 AM
I hope everyone reading this will vote for Garvey and Pell. Sure the current trustees work well as a team. That's really the problem. While no one advocates a board hostile to each other or dysfunctional, we definitely don't need one using the same rubber stamp over and over. We need people who will ask some questions and will worry more about the quality of our waters than disappointing some potential political contributor.
By baywoman (165), southampton on Nov 2, 09 7:48 PM