Suffolk politicians look to future without County Exec. Levy

HAUPPAUGE - Suffolk is still reeling tonight from County Executive Steve Levy's bombshell announcement that he will not run for re-election in November.

Levy issued a press release yesterday saying he would not seek a third term because of his desire to "tackle other challenges."

Following Levy's announcement, District Attorney Tom Spota released a statement saying the county executive was turning over his $4 million campaign fund. Spota said, "This action was taken by him to resolve a sixteen-month investigation conducted by the Government Corruption Bureau which began in the summer of 2009."

Those who donated money to Levy's campaign will be able to recover it. Whatever is left will be donated to charity.

Spota said that while he found "serious issues" with Levy's fundraising, he did not ask for Levy's resignation and would not prosecute him.

Mike Cornacchia, a former federal prosecutor, says political corruption cases are among the toughest to get a conviction. He says prosecutors may have simply concluded a conviction in this case wasn't likely.

"I think what Tom Spota did was the right thing by not imposing his will on the electorate who has elected this man," Cornacchia says.

While Levy is expected to leave in December, some political observers are already looking to the future, saying that Levy's decision will change the way Suffolk's government does business.

Suffolk Legislator Ed Romaine (R-Center Moriches), who ran against Levy for county executive in 2003, even suggests it might be better for Levy to resign now to avoid further complications.

However, Levy's Chief Deputy County Executive Chris Kent, who would succeed Levy under the county's charter, says an immediate resignation is not a possibility. Still, political experts are already floating names of Republicans and Democrats who may be vying for Levy's seat.

Without Levy's aggressive style of governing, some say power could shift back to the Legislature.

To watch LI Talks: No Third Term for Levy, tune into iO Channel 612.

Suffolk County Executive Levy will not seek third termStatement of Suffolk County Executive Steve LevyStatement of Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota

INTERVIEW: Democratic Strategist Chris Hahn on Levy's announcement

Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter

advertisement | advertise on News 12

Top 5 Must See

The county's Republican Executive Committee met to decide 1 Nassau GOP endorses Martins for exec
Thousands of mourners gathered in Bethpage for the 2 Thousands line Bethpage streets in tribute to fallen firefighter
Amtrak announced Thursday it will begin replacing tracks 3 Amtrak accelerating Penn Station work, rail delays expected
They blame the tax break for sending property 4 Hempstead IDA revokes Green Acres Mall tax break
The Pentagon says two U.S. service members were 5 2 US troops killed in eastern Afghanistan

advertisement | advertise on News 12


Each week, News 12's Doug Geed explores the Check out fun things to do on the East End!

Explore the Twin Forks with News 12's Doug Geed.

Each week a different shelter visits News 12 Dog Day Fridays Series

Each week a different shelter visits News 12 Long Island with pets up for adoption.

News 12 digs deep to find Long Island's Discover Long Island's Hidden Past

News 12's Danielle Campbell digs into Long Island's roots.

News 12's Lily Stolzberg sees how much Long On The Spot

News 12's Lily Stolzberg sees how much Long Islanders know about everything and anything.

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to News12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service Electric℠ video customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.