Source: Venditto's son expected nominee for Schmitt's seat

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Nassau County Legislature Presiding Officer Peter J. Schmitt,

Nassau County Legislature Presiding Officer Peter J. Schmitt, 62, of Massapequa collapsed during a meeting in County Executive Edward Mangano's office, officials said. (May 31, 2012) Photo Credit: James Carbone

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Nassau Republicans will nominate the son of Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto to fill the vacant seat left by Legis. Peter Schmitt, who died last week from a heart attack, according to a well-placed county source.

Michael Venditto, 31, is expected to secure the nomination Thursday night at a meeting of the district’s executive leadership, the source said.

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Venditto has been counsel to the Hempstead Town Board since 2006. His salary is $94,300.

A Town of Oyster Bay spokeswoman declined to comment as did Nassau GOP spokesman Anthony Santino.

The only Republican to officially express interest in the seat, which leans heavily Republican, is Gary Slavin, the past president of the Massapequa Chamber of Commerce.

“They haven’t talked to me but I have heard from the people in the know they are upset with me trying to steal this position from Michael [Venditto],” Slavin said in an email on Thursday.

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A Democratic source said Venditto likely needs “more seasoning” before he is ready to serve on the legislature.

“They may as well be nominating [Nassau GOP chairman] Joe Mondello,” the source said. “He will just vote in lockstep with the party.”

On Wednesday, Nassau Democrats nominated Joanne Maglione, a Republican and former deputy county attorney from Massapequa Park as their nominee for the vacant 12th legislative seat.

Maglione, 42, is a lawyer at Jaspan Schlesinger in Garden City. In an interview on Wednesday, Maglione said she asked the firm’s managing partner, Steve Schlesinger, the Democrat’s lead counsel on election law cases, to help facilitate a deal with the Democrats.

Nassau Democratic Party chairman Jay Jacobs said Maglione would be an independent voice on the legislature. Nonetheless, Jacobs said he was not prepared to match the Republicans spending to win the seat.

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