By Kathryn G. Menu
The Southampton Town Independence Party announced its slate of candidates last week, largely supporting candidates who have already earned the support of the town’s Democratic committee.
Independence Party member and two-term supervisor Anna Throne-Holst earned her party’s support for a third term as did party member Brad Bender, a builder from North Hampton who narrowly lost election to the town board in 2011 by just over 100 votes. The Independence Party also opted to support Democrat Frank Zappone, a member of the Democratic Party who also serves as Throne-Holst’s deputy supervisor.
The party also backed Independence Party member Jay Schneiderman for another term on the Suffolk County Legislature. Schneiderman is being challenged in that race by Republican Town Councilman Chris Nuzzi.
Independence Party member Alex Gregor has also earned a nod for another term as highway superintendent and the party backed Republican Sundy Schermeyer for town clerk.
The Independence Party supported just four candidates for five trustee seats. Independence Party member Bill Bell, Democrats Eric Schultz and Howard Pickerell and Republican Scott Horowitz were endorsed when the party made its endorsement announcement Friday night in Hampton Bays.
“This year we had a large pool of great candidates who screened with our committee,” said New York State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele, Jr., who is also the Southampton Town Independence Party chairman. “I am thrilled to present a very experienced, knowledgeable, and diverse group of candidates who I know will lead Southampton Town on a great path. I look forward to supporting their campaign and wish them luck in the upcoming election.”
“I am truly honored to run on the ticket for Southampton Town Board with a stellar council slate that genuinely represents public service, not politics,” said Throne-Holst. “Our multi-party affiliation also reinforces our commitment to representing all constituents regardless of who they are, where they live, what their need or party affiliation might be.”
“I want to thank the Southampton Town Independence Party for endorsing me for the position of Town Councilman,” said Bender. “As a known community leader, it’s not about being on the left or right. It’s about serving the public. I look forward to being a full time councilman. The people of Southampton deserve a dedicated full time councilman.”
“I am proud to stand with the other candidates nominated by the Independence Party,” said Zappone. “We represent a group of men and women who have demonstrated a commitment to the same goal- serving the public.”
“Fred Thiele has always been an advocate in the Assembly for issues facing the town clerk’s office and now as the Southampton Independence Party Chairman, I appreciate his party’s support for my nomination to run for a third term as Southampton’s Town Clerk,” said Schermeyer. “I share Fred’s ongoing commitment to efficient, effective government and I look forward to continuing to provide the service our residents and visitors deserve.”
“I thank Fred Thiele and the entire Independence Party for their nomination today and their confidence in my abilities,” said Gregor. “I look forward to continuing the work I have undertaken to improve the road system for the residents of Southampton Town.”
“I’m running on my record of accomplishments for the South Fork,” said Schneiderman. “I am pleased to run alongside such a qualified slate of candidates.”