Claiming in published reports that townsfolk were “begging” her to run for supervisor, she advised me via e-mail that she made the decision only a week ago.
I doubt that. Zimet may have committed only recently; but she’s been plotting this move for at least two months. Zimet was nominated for a fifth term in the legislature by Democrats in June.
Former school board member Steve Greenfield, an independent candidate for legislature in New Paltz, may have smoked out Zimet with a series of sharply worded letters to New Paltz Times accusing Zimet of being a double-dipper.
There’s some interesting history on that. When the current legislature replaced the board of supervisors 40-plus years ago, it was not clear whether an incumbent supervisor could run for re-election as supervisor and seek election as a legislator at the same time. Several tried. All lost both. Reflecting public sentiment, the law, as Zimet well knows, does not allow a person to seek more than one elected office at a time.
As for Greenfield, he should be delirious over all-but-automatic Zimet out of the race for legislator, although I don’t think she was attempting to do her severest critic any favors.
The road back to town hall — Zimet served two tumultuous terms as supervisor in the mid-1990s — will not be smooth. Hokanson, for all her warts — she was three months late filing a town audit with the comptroller this year — has a following which will turn out.
Zimet, who hasn’t faced a real opponent in years, may have some difficulty getting up to fighting speed, “begging” constituents notwithstanding.
It would appear the clever Zimet can’t lose, or can she? If she gets beaten for supervisor, she’s still on the ballot for legislator. Against an energized and righteous Greenfield.
Note: Greenfield has been particularly tough on Zimet over her attendance record as a legislator. It’s a stretch. Official records show Zimet missed six meetings last year (including special meetings) out of 24, compared to 11 for Bob Aiello of Saugerties (the leading no-show). Six legislators attended every meeting.
Robin Yess exited hissing and moaning over the good ol’ boys sabotaging her brief chairmanship of the Republican Party last spring, warning that she could accomplish more “on the outside.”
Now she’s back, spokesperson of a local Tea Party clone called the Liberty Coalition. Other “advisory team” members include former legislature attorney David Van Benschoten, Vivian Wadlin, Pam Odell and Jon Dogar Michailescu, husband of Manuela, candidate for the Republican nomination for legislature in Rochester.