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Long Island

Village residents to go to the polls Wednesday to pick candidates

Thousands of residents across Long Island are to head to their village polling places on Wednesday, electing mayors, trustees and deciding on referendums.

In Mastic Beach, voters will pick a third mayor in 4 1/2 years after Mayor Bill Biondi opted not to run for an additional two-year term. Incumbent trustees Nick Busa and Gary Stiriz -- who hasn't attended a village meeting since January and is said to be vacationing in Florida -- also decided not to run for re-election.

Freshman board members Maura Spery and Bruce Summa, both elected last March, will be the senior members of the trustee board.

Eight candidates are running for two Hempstead trustee seats as the village grapples with a $2 billion downtown redevelopment project and the fallout from a troubled school district. The top two finishers are elected to four-year terms.

The Hempstead board has touted the village's improved bond rating and lowered crime rate, but is wrestling with a project to revitalize downtown, which includes a series of multistory apartments, businesses including a hotel, an entertainment complex and parking.

In Amityville, voters will decide in a referendum whether to expand a pension-like benefit for the village's firefighters. The proposal would credit eligible firefighters 62 or older $20 a month for each year of service up to 40 years.

In the Village of Valley Stream, Mayor Edwin Fare is being challenged in his bid for a second term by Martin Peter Zirpolo, and four candidates are vying for two at-large trustee seats. All of the positions are for four years.

Two incumbents and two challengers are vying for the two open trustee seats in Stewart Manor.

And seven candidates running for two seats on Freeport's village board of trustees will face challenges of developing North Main Street and improving the village's infrastructure.

An executive with a prominent Long Island real estate firm is challenging a pair of incumbent trustees for one of two open seats on the Old Field Village Board.

Meanwhile, two incumbent trustees seeking re-election in Great Neck Plaza are facing a challenger who says he wants to be the voice of younger residents in the race for two, two-year at-large board seats.

In Baxter Estates, incumbents Charles Comer and Nora Haagenson are running unopposed for two trustee seats under the Sunshine Party ticket. No one is on the ballot for mayor. Haagenson is campaigning for that position as a write-in candidate. The terms for mayor and trustee are two years.

In Greenport, at the tip of the North Fork, voters will pick a new mayor and will fill two seats on the village board.

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