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Oyster Bay Town Board again adjourns without naming supervisor

Former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on

Former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on Nov. 29, 2016, in Oyster Bay. Credit: Howard Schnapp

The Oyster Bay Town Board adjourned its regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday without voting on a new supervisor to replace John Venditto.

Acting Supervisor Joseph Muscarella said after the meeting that there was no vote because the other board members “need more time.” He said he hoped there would be a vote for a new supervisor at the Jan. 24 meeting.

On Friday, Muscarella had scheduled an emergency board meeting to consider appointing Assemb. Joseph Saladino (R-Massapequa Park) to be the town’s new supervisor but the vote didn’t take place because three of the six board members didn’t show up and there was not a quorum.

In opening statements at Tuesday’s meeting, at which all members attended, Muscarella said that Friday’s events had been “unbelievable” and “disheartening.”

“What happened on Friday was sad,” Muscarella said. “I had no knowledge of it, no call. Nothing came my way.”

Venditto, who was indicted on federal corruption charges in October, resigned last week to focus on his legal defense.

Muscarella apologized to Saladino and Nassau County state Supreme Court Judge Angelo Delligatti, who he said had come Friday expecting a swearing-in ceremony.

Councilman Anthony Macagnone said in an interview that he was surprised there was no vote on Tuesday. Macagnone, who did not show up at the meeting Friday, said that last week he had sent a memo to Muscarella requesting that the board interview prospective candidates before voting.

“I’m sure he got the memo,” Macagnone said.

Macagnone said that on Monday he and two other board members interviewed two candidates while a third declined to be interviewed. One of the candidates interviewed was Saladino, who Macagnone said had impressed him.

Board members Chris Coschignano and Rebecca Alesia also did not attend the Friday meeting.

Muscarella called for reconciliation on the board.

“Let’s just get together and move forward,” Muscarella said.

James Versocki, 43, an attorney from Sea Cliff, told the board he was “angry as a resident” about the state of the town and called on them to make tough choices.

“Not rushing to appoint a new supervisor was a good decision, but I also think you need to seriously think about how you will operate if there is going to be no supervisor,” Versocki said.

Nassau County Democratic Chairman Jay Jacobs said in an interview the all-Republican board was having trouble finding someone who could protect political patronage jobs and contracts and also be re-elected.

“They realize that short of appointing Pope Francis they are not going to be able to come up with a supervisor who can win that seat in November,” Jacobs said.


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