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Sources: Top aide to Tom Croci takes job with Steve Bellone

Eric Hofmeister, a top aide to State Sen.

Eric Hofmeister, a top aide to State Sen. Tom Croci, will go to work for Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, sources say. Credit: Ed Betz

In a move that may raise more questions about whether Republican State Sen. Tom Croci will seek re-election, his district director Eric Hofmeister is resigning to work for Democratic Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone as a deputy public works commissioner, according to state and county sources.

Sources say Hofmeister will be named to the $135,000-a-year job as part of personnel moves Bellone is expected to announce Friday. Hofmeister is to begin work March 12.

Hofmeister, 55, of Sayville, was Croci’s deputy when Croci served as Islip Town supervisor. Hofmeister was acting supervisor while Croci did a Navy reserve stint in Afghanistan. Earlier, Hofmeister worked as Islip Commissioner of Environmental Control.

Croci, a Republican, released a statement last month saying he was undecided about running again. But he has held two campaign fundraisers since then.

Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan (R-East Northport) says he expects Croci to run again. However, one prominent Islip GOP official said, “It looks like the handwriting on the wall is getting bigger.”

Hofmeister makes $106,407 as Croci’s district director.

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