Tom Croci will be the new Islip Town supervisor come January, after the results of a recount were released.
Suffolk County Board of Elections officials confirmed Tuesday Croci, a Republican, beat Democratic Islip Town Supervisor Phil Nolan by 343 votes in his first run for public office.
Croci welcomed the result. "I'm proud of the team effort, each member worked hard to be in the position to now serve the residents of Islip," he said, adding that a transition team would be announced soon.
The former naval intelligence officer and aide to freshman State Sen. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley), garnered 25,026 votes to Nolan's 24,683 votes -- or 50.34 to 49.65 percent of the votes cast -- following a recount completed last weekend. Almost one-fourth of Croci's support came from people voting on the Conservative line.
The GOP secured cross-endorsements of the Conservative and Independence parties before the election, and last week -- within days of the vote -- Islip Town Conservative chairman Mike Torres submitted requests for the job titles and salaries of the 90-odd town personnel who in January will serve at the pleasure of the new town board, four Republicans and one Conservative council member.Councilmen-elect John Cochrane, a Republican, and Anthony Senft, a Conservative, beat out incumbent council member Gene Parrington and newcomer Renee Ortiz, both Democrats.The positions -- all town heads of departments or commissioners, their deputies and support staff, including the town attorney and comptroller -- can be replaced by town board resolution. Croci said Tuesday his transition team "will be looking at all resumes -- both current and prospective employees."
Turnout in the town was 27.5 percent, marginally higher than the 27 percent turnout countywide, though the county figure has not been finalized.
Nolan became the first Democratic supervisor in the Town of Islip in four decades when he won a special election back in 2006, following the political scandal that took down former Republican supervisor Peter J. McGowan. He then won re-election in 2007, but Democrats failed to hold a town board seat or secure another open seat that same year. On election night, Nolan said he believed the town had returned to its fundamentally Republican roots.Nolan had sought a recount after he trailed by 419 votes on election night, with more than 1,700 absentees to be counted. The loss makes him the sole Long Island incumbent supervisor unseated in town races.
Tuesday, Nolan said he phoned Croci twice to wish him well, but had been unable to reach him in person. "I am conceding, and I do wish him well," he said.
A spokesman for Zeldin said Croci went back to work for the state senator Monday, having taken leave without pay to campaign from Sept. 1 to Nov. 14, followed by a week's vacation.