An incumbent and two newcomers will seek a pair of seats on the East Williston Village Board in the March 19 village election.
James Iannone, an attorney with a practice in Williston Park, is seeking his second four-year term. First-time village board candidates Raffaela Dunne, a civil engineer, and James Reichman, a lieutenant in the FDNY, are also running for a seat.
All three candidates cited water quality in the village, where sediment and pressure issues have been a problem, as a primary concern.
Iannone, 45, touted the current board’s ability to reach a contract agreement in 2016 with Williston Park — which sells its water to East Williston — in a deal that regulates rate increases. He noted that the village continues to get its water from Williston Park while one of that community's tanks is down, though it is expected to come back online near Memorial Day. Once that happens, some of the sediment issues may be alleviated and the board will be in a better position to assess the problem, Iannone said.
He said the village has also taken steps to curb the problem by issuing summonses to contractors who open up hydrants without prior village authority.
“Unfortunately, we have older infrastructure,” Iannone said. “Hopefully, the water situation will improve once Williston Park’s tank is back up.”
He said he would also like to work with North Hempstead Town officials to install a traffic light on East Williston Avenue near Northside Elementary School.
Dunne, 50, has a master’s degree in sanitary engineering and works for the Manhattan-based real estate development firm Washington Square Partners. She said her background makes her uniquely qualified to act as a liaison between village residents and water consultants on the issue.
A member of the village planning board, Dunne said her background also gives her a good understanding of potential zoning changes being studied during a moratorium on conditional-use property applications. She said she would also like to see public field access preserved should the Northside Elementary School install a fence around its property.
“I think I have lived in the community for long enough, which gives me a good perspective about how the village operates and what makes it a special place,” Dunne said. “I am able to navigate between a lot of different opinions and work toward a solution.”
Reichman, 47, who along with Iannone is also a volunteer firefighter in the East Williston Fire Department, described himself as a fiscal conservative focused on maintaining quality of life in the quiet bedroom community. Reichman, who worked in construction prior to the FDNY and said he has done extensive research on the sediment issue, also said his skillset would be useful in addressing the issue.
“I want to get out there and make sure it’s getting done,” he said. “It’s a huge quality-of-life issue for the residents.”
Calling the village “a little jewel tucked away in a beautiful spot of Long Island,” Reichman said he is also interested in beautification and addressing vandalism.
Incumbent trustee Bonnie Parente is running unopposed for mayor. Mayor David Tanner, who has served on the board for 21 years, the last eight as mayor, will not seek re-election.
Polls are open from noon to 9 p.m. March 19 at Village Hall, 2 Prospect St.
CLARIFICATION: East Williston Village continues to get its water from Williston Park while one of Williston Park's tanks is down. In an earlier version of this story, East Williston Trustee James Iannone said the village was getting the water from Mineola.