The Glen Cove Mayor and the City Council voted unanimously last evening to appoint former Councilman Anthony Jimenez to fill a vacant seat on the panel until November.
The appointment ended months of acrimony after the April death of Nicholas DiLeo. Individual members praised Jimenez as a dedicated public servant.
Jimenez, a Democrat who served on the council for 14 years before being defeated in November, was sworn in immediately. His term began Tuesday and will run until the November election is decided between Republican Joseph Capobianco and Democrat Theresa Moschetta.
Jimenez, who has promised not to seek the seat, thanked the council and mayor for their trust. "I do promise to do the best that I can for the city for the short time that I will be serving here," Jimenez said. "It's truly an honor to be placed in the seat of my very good friend Nick DiLeo."
Mayor Reginald Spinello's attempt to appoint Capobianco drew criticism from Republican Councilmen Anthony Gallo Jr. and Efraim Spagnoletti. Democrats argued that since DiLeo was a Democrat, his appointment should be as well. Republican Pamela Panzenbeck supported Capobianco's appointment.
Spagnoletti said the city went through a difficult period following DiLeo's death and that Jimenez's commitment not to seek re-election "takes the politics out of this highly sensitive situation."
"He's the consummate public servant," Panzenbeck said.
"There's no better way to honor Nick DiLeo than to have Tony in his seat," Democrat Timothy Tenke said.
Democrat Michael Famigletti agreed, saying, "It's a wonderful way to honor Nick DiLeo."