East Hampton Town Council MemberPosted: 10/27/2017 18:01:00 -04:00 Updated:
Jeffrey Bragman - D, IN, WF
Bragman, 66, of Northwest Woods, is running on the Democratic, Independence and Working Families party lines. Bragman is seeking his first elected position. He previously served as the appointed attorney for boards of planning, architectural review and zoning in East Hampton Town, Southampton Town and North Haven. Bragman is originally from Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Yale University and a law degree from Emory University School of Law. He has a son.
Bragman said he wants to curb overdevelopment and “really maintain the character of the community” by going through zoning and planning laws, using his experience as an attorney who has fought against development projects. He said he wants to protect the area’s natural resources, historic homes and affordability because “I’m very concerned about not having two East Hamptons: one for the ultrawealthy and one for everybody else.”
Kathee Burke-Gonzalez - D, IN, WF
Burke-Gonzalez, 55, of Springs, is running on the Democratic, Independence and Working Families party lines. She is seeking her second term as town councilwoman. Burke-Gonzalez spent nine years serving on the Springs school board, including two as its president, before she was elected to the town board in 2013. The former advertising executive is originally from Valley Stream. She earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing management from Siena College. She is married with two children.
Concerned about climate change, Burke-Gonzalez said her “No. 1 issue” is protecting water quality, which “drives our real estate values.” She said the town board is working on drafting wastewater treatment plans for multiple areas, as well as a coastal assessment plan to predict how rising sea levels will affect residents. Burke-Gonzalez said she also wants to collaborate with “Deepwater Wind on coming up with a plan the community will find acceptable for clean, renewable energy.” She said she will continue to work to secure local control of the town airport, build a new senior center and create more affordable housing.
Paul A. Giardina - C, R, Ref
Giardina, 68, is running on the Republican, Conservative and Reform party lines. Giardina, who lives in an unincorporated section of the town, received a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from the University of Michigan in 1971 and a master’s degree in nuclear engineering from New York University in 1973. He retired last year after 37 years with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where his work included cleaning up leaks from the Brookhaven National Lab high flux beam reactor and running the agency’s radiation program. He also spent four years working for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Giardina has an environmental consulting company, Cedar Meadow Inc., and breeds racehorses. He ran the Springs General Store in the 1980s. He is married with two children.
Giardina said he is concerned about groundwater quality and environmental issues. He said he would use the Community Preservation Fund exclusively for properties over the groundwater aquifer, noting that every acre preserved would purify 1.3 million gallons of water per year. Giardina said he wants to create a community septic system in downtown Montauk and would apply for EPA funding to do so. He said he wants to create a minimum of 1,000 new units of housing for seniors, the workforce and local high school graduates. To combat the opioid problem, he said he would evaluate current policies, establish mentorship programs and look into establishing an easy-access residential treatment facility.
Gerard Larsen - C R
Larsen, 53, of Northwest Woods is running on the Republican and Conservative party lines. He retired as the chief of the East Hampton Village Police Department last month after serving 32 years on the force. He runs a private security and property management company with his wife. Larsen also served as president of the East Hampton Town Little League for 10 years. He is originally from East Hampton Village. He earned a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Empire State College. He is married, with six children.
Larsen said he wants to make sure town employees are getting “fair treatment,” including raising their salaries to more closely match those earned by employees in neighboring Southampton Town. He said he would “like the town to be more friendly towards its residents,” and has proposed reworking the rental registry law to put more responsibility on tenants because they “are the ones who cause the overcrowding and the party houses.” He said he also wants to create more affordable housing by building more apartments above commercial buildings, citing that “my kids who grew up here can’t afford to live here.”