MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- Voters were treated to a long but lively League of Women Voters candidates' forum Wednesday, Oct. 8, including contested races for village seats.
Six people are running for three seats on the Village Board of Trustees.
Incumbent Democrats Ilissa Miller and Leon Potok teamed up with David Finch, who won the Sept. 9 primary over Trustee Andres Bermudez-Hallstrom, who was not endorsed by the Democratic Party.
The three Republican challengers who spoke during a forum sponsored by the LWV of Larchmont/Mamaroneck were Michael Ianniello, Stefanie Lividini and Maggie Leigh O'Neill.
All six candidates brought enthusiasm to the forum, explaining why their career experience, love of the community, volunteer and/or committee duties as well as personal interests would make them solid public servants.
Agreed-upon themes included protecting the waterfront, reducing flooding, responding to constituents and supporting sound budgets and smart development, including a new use for the vacant firehouse. Some have suggested it become the next home for LMCTV, which videotaped the forum. A rebroadcast will be posted here by LMCTV.org.
Finch, a 40-year resident of Mamaroneck, said, "This is an important opportunity for me to make a difference." The retired banker called for civility, politeness and respect on the village board.
O'Neill, a fourth-generation Mamaroneck resident, said, "This is about public service, not politics. ... The harbor needs to be maintained. I think it's underutilized."
Ianniello, a 19-year resident, said he'd bring extensive experience in the building industry and his expertise as outgoing chairman of the village Planning Board to the Board of Trustees if elected Nov. 4. He complained that the Jefferson Avenue Bridge project is more than a year behind and that department heads "should be called to task."
The candidates also shared their views on how to balance the needs of Mamaroneck Avenue restaurant/taverns with nearby residents. "There seems to have been lax enforcement,'' Finch said.
Lividini said, "Mamaroneck is thriving. It's a great place to go. It's a great place to eat, (but) it's not fair for people to have to deal with noise."
Miller and Potok expressed frustration at not reaching timely solutions to some village problems because of disagreements with other board members.
Miller said she's "dedicated to listening, learning, understanding."
Potok said he's pushed for multispace parking systems that "will more than pay for themselves'' and wants to eliminate the duplication of services, including assessment functions.
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