Southold Town Supervisor Scott A. Russell had previously said this current term might be his last. But after capably leading the town for nearly 14 years, the Cutchogue Republican wants to stay in the job for another four. He has a lot more to do.
Russell, 55, speaks well to the challenges of building more housing that year-round residents of Southold can afford when the town lacks the sewer infrastructure for significant numbers of multifamily units. He says he's working to persuade county officials there to allow the town to build housing on smaller parcels. But he's picking his spots carefully. That goes for allowing retail in industrial zones, too. "Everything's a balance," Russell says.
The supervisor also is wise to advocate for more restrictive zoning for the land in Orient at the Plum Island ferry dock, while also focusing on what's next for the island itself.
Mattituck Democrat Gregory P. Doroski, 39, is a businessman with good ideas and lots of enthusiasm. The one-time brewer built a business in Brooklyn and returned to Mattituck two years ago, hoping to expand his brewery, but says he abandoned that effort in part due to the town's slow planning process. Doroski thinks Southold can speed up those efforts. But his knowledge of how town government works is limited, and his focus on accessory apartments may not be enough to produce the housing the town needs. Doroski should push for innovations to grow the economy and to learn more about governmental functions should he again seek elective office.
Russell better understands how to move forward on upgrading wastewater systems and navigating the frustrating difficulties of reducing helicopter noise. In his next term, Russell should pick up the pace on master planning and other efforts.
Newsday endorses Russell. — The editorial board