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Smithtown Dems promise Main St. upgrades

Democrats running for two Smithtown Town Board seats began their campaigns Monday by promising to make improvements on Main Street in downtown Smithtown.

Teresa Haft and Howard Knispel, both 52, were nominated unanimously Monday night at a meeting of the Smithtown Democratic Committee in Kings Park. Haft and Knispel will run against incumbents Edward Wehrheim, a Republican, and Robert Creighton, a Conservative running with Republican endorsement, for two at-large seats.

Haft, of Smithtown, a graphic designer and emergency medical technician, said she wants to improve safety on Main Street, the site of three pedestrian fatalities since November 2009.

Knispel, of Hauppauge, a private practice attorney and former member of the town’s Board of Ethics, said he would upgrade Main Street’s business district.

“Smithtown needs to get a jolt,” said Knispel, a former administrative law judge for the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission.

Receiver of Taxes Deanna Varricchio, a Republican, also is seeking re-election. No Democrat volunteered to run for the post, said Smithtown Democratic chairman Ed Maher.

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