Now that the Shandaken Democrats have held their August 26 caucus, the way is clear for Rob Stanley to run unopposed for a third term as town supervisor, unless a third-party candidate crops up before November. The horse race for two council seats will proceed with Democratic candidates Faye Storms and former councilman Tim Malloy vying against Frank Stapleton and incumbent Jack Jordan, selected at the Republican caucus in early August.
Eric Hofmeister has the nod from both major parties to run for a fourth term as highway superintendent, with Keith Johnson, who held the job for one term, determined to mount an independent challenge once again. Democrats approved Hofmeister by a vote of 32 to 13 in the only contested position of the caucus.
Town justices Tom Crucet and Michael Miranda were both approved by both Democrats and Republicans to keep their positions. Peter DiModica, who has served as an assessor for the past five years, was chosen, without opposition, to run against Republican candidate Ken Herdman.
With about 70 people in attendance at Glenbrook Park during a break in the rain on a Monday evening, the first nomination came from Bruce Barry in supporting of Stanley. Barry praised the supervisor for “inclusion of both parties in town business.” A second came from Henry Stout, who said, “I have seen him put the priorities of the town above party affiliation.”
Stanley spoke later, describing how the town came together to deal with Hurricane Irene. “We may squabble, but at the end of the day, we stand together. I believe I’ve provided the leadership that’s needed.” He also noted his administration’s formation of the Parks and Recreation committee and the Shandaken Area Flood Assessment and Remediation Initiative (SAFARI), as well as efforts to coordinate activities with neighboring communities.
Tim Malloy nominated Miranda, who has lived in the town for 35 years, following time spent in college, Vietnam, law school, and the District Attorney’s office. Rolf Reiss seconded.
Tom Rinaldo nominated his neighbor, Crucet, praising him for being present to assist at the firehouse during the aftermath of Hurricane Irene and for officiating at the first public gay marriage in Shandaken. Bruce Barry seconded.
Miranda, a Democrat, spoke briefly, saying of himself and Republican Crucet, “We work as a team,” and Crucet agreed.
Dylan Callahan nominated Hofmeister, remarking that when he makes the rounds for his lawn-mowing business, he sees the highway super at work on the roads and on the stream beds, “getting a lot done.” Town clerk Joyce Grant seconded, saying Hofmeister’s responsiveness and kindness make her work easier.
Hofmeister said that while maintaining town roads, he has also worked on over 100 FEMA projects to restore storm damage. He stated that he has saved money by using town crews rather than outside contractors for such projects, and he participated in the SAFARI planning for flood mitigation. He is battling with FEMA over local bridges, which will need less repair in the climate-change future if the agency will allow modifications when restorations are made.
Randy Ostrander nominated Johnson, with a second from Bruce Barry. Johnson said he has lived in the town since the 1960s and runs an excavating and logging business. He has worked with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) on stream stabilization. During his two years as highway superintendent, he built several miles of town roads, he said, “and a lot of roads are not in good shape. I will bring efficiency and supervision.”
No ‘them,’ only ‘us’
Dave Pillard nominated Faye Storms for town council, citing her service on the Belleayre Music Festival board, the STS Playhouse board, the Shandaken Women’s Network, and the town planning board. Storms has run a business for 34 years, is a successful realtor, and as a single mom, has raised a son who will soon graduate from college. “She has the vision to help people find solutions in an economically and environmentally sustainable way,” said Pillard. Gail Alba seconded, noting that Storms had helped raise funds for residents flooded by Hurricane Irene.
“If you elect me, I will listen to all concerns,” said Storms. “I will make sure Shandaken stays unique and special.” She paraphrased Bill Clinton, saying, “There is no ‘them’ in Shandaken, only ‘us.’”
Rolf Reiss nominated Tim Malloy, describing the former councilman as “smart, articulate, with a zest and a passion for life.” A second came from Randy Ostrander.
Malloy said he’s a native Shandakenite, from a family that’s been here since the 1800s. He and his wife, a nurse, both attended Phoenicia Elementary School and Onteora High School, and his daughter just started college at Fordham. An outdoorsman, he enjoys hiking, biking, and skiing. He practiced on the Shandaken landscape while training to run the New York City marathon, which he called “easier than running for town council.” Nevertheless, after deciding not to seek reelection to the town board after his single term, he said, “I really missed it.”
Assessor Carol Seitz nominated her co-worker, former town supervisor DiModica, calling him “hardworking, intelligent, and fair.” Malloy seconded. “There are no party lines in the assessor’s office,” remarked DiModica.