Peter Schmitt, presiding officer of the Nassau County Legislature, was taken by ambulance Monday afternoon to Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola for observation after experiencing shortness of breath.

Spokesman Edward Ward said Schmitt, "had an episode of shortness of breath and high blood pressure. At the hospital, they found fluid around his lungs. He is being monitored there and will stay overnight."

Schmitt (R-Massapequa) has served as presiding officer since Republicans took control of the legislature in 2010. Schmitt, 60, has been a county lawmaker since 1995.

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