Thiele lands first committee chairmanship

+ -
Assemb. Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor)

Assemb. Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor) Photo Credit: Kathy Kmonicek, 2010

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Spin Cycle

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics.

Assemb. Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor) has been chosen to lead the Assembly Libraries and Education Technology Committee, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) announced Tuesday.

It’s the first committee chairmanship Thiele -- the lone Independence Party member in the state Legislature -- has received since being elected to the Assembly in 1995.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Thiele was originally elected as a Republican but announced he was switching to the Independence Party in 2009 because, he said, the GOP "no longer speaks to pocketbook issues."

Since changing parties, Thiele has sat with the Democrat conference in the Assembly -- giving him more influence because Democrats outnumber Republicans in the chamber, 100 to 40 (101 to 40 if you count Thiele) with nine current vacancies.

The Libraries and Education Technology Committee isn't one of the higher-ranking ones in the Assembly pecking order. Unlike most committees, the chairman doesn't receive an extra stipend for serving.

The best of Newsday every day in your inbox. Get the Newsday Now newsletter!

Comments now uses Facebook for our comment boards. Please read our guidelines and connect your Facebook account to comment.

You also may be interested in: