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Candidates picked for 2 open seats on Islip Town Board

Candidate slates for two seats on the Islip Town Board up for election this November, as well as other local races, have been chosen by local political parties.

The Islip GOP Committee and the Islip Conservative Committee held conventions this week while the Democrats convened last week.

Bill Garbarino, the Islip Republican chairman, said that about 100 people attended the event Wednesday night in Bay Shore.

Islip Town Councilwoman Trish Bergin Weichbrodt was selected to run for her third four-year term. If she wins, Bergin Weichbrodt would cap out in Islip’s term limits, currently set for three terms, or 12 years.

The Islip Conservative Committee, headed by John E. Flynn, also the Suffolk Conservative Party’s vice chairman, held a convention Tuesday night and voted to support Bergin Weichbrodt and another Republican town council candidate, James O’Connor.

Steve Flotteron, currently a member of the Islip Town Board, was nominated to run for the 11th District in the Suffolk County Legislature. The seat is held by Legis. Thomas Barraga of West Islip, who was elected in 2005 and has reached his term limit.

To run in place of Flotteron on the Islip Town Board is O’Connor, 54, an attorney and 12-year resident of Great River who served as a North Hempstead Town councilman from 1997 to 2001.

O’Connor, who is a Republican, most recently ran against Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone in 2015, losing to the incumbent Democrat 57 percent to 43 percent.

“Jim O’Connor will be a great partner with Trish in holding the line on government spending and protecting our citizens,” Flynn said in a statement.

Last Wednesday, about 60 people attended the Islip Town Democratic Committee and unanimously nominated Jason Fenley, 40, a lawyer from Brightwaters, and Sam Gonzalez, 55, a labor leader from Brentwood, as their candidates for Islip Town Board, an Islip Democratic Party spokeswoman said.

Islip Democratic Committee Chair Luis Montes said the candidates chosen “are ready to get Islip working again for the people.”

For the two open spots on the Islip Town Board, 22 people were screened by the GOP, including Garbarino’s son, state Assemb. Andrew Garbarino of Sayville, who was not chosen to run for local office.

“After we looked at all the candidates, we decided that it was for the good of the organization, for the party and for the community that we decided James [O’Connor] would be a good fit for the town board at this time,” Bill Garbarino said in a phone interview. “Andrew is doing good in Albany and in his [7th Assembly] district, and he will stay there at this time.”

For district court seats, the Islip GOP nominated Assemb. Al Graf of Holbrook, who was elected to represent the 5th Assembly District in 2010, and James Malone, a Conservative Party member from Sayville, who is currently the law secretary for state Supreme Court Justice William J. Condon, Garbarino said.

The Democrats nominated Elizabeth Bloom, 58, of West Islip, who works as a support magistrate in Nassau County Family Court.

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