Shelter Island SupervisorPosted: 10/28/2017 12:13:00 -04:00 Updated:
James Dougherty - D
Dougherty, 80, of Shelter Island, is running on the Democratic Party line. He first took office as town supervisor in 2008. He received a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, a law degree from Columbia Law School, and a master’s degree in business from Harvard Business School. Before becoming town supervisor, Dougherty was president of Supermarket General Corp., which is owned and operated by the Pathmark supermarket chain. He is widowed.
Dougherty said that Shelter Island has the lowest taxes on Long Island, and that his financial experience has allowed for that to be maintained while delivering essential services and utilities. The “4-poster” system to control ticks by killing them on deer was introduced in the town to control tick-related diseases during Dougherty’s first term in office, and he said he aims to expand measures against the tick infestation in the future. With the town getting its water from an underground aquifer, Dougherty said that he is also striving to maintain both the quality and quantity of available water on Shelter Island. As part of an initiative to increase the availability of affordable housing, Dougherty said that he will work to repeal the prohibition on short-term rentals in Shelter Island.
Gary J. Gerth - R
Gerth, 75, of Shelter Island, is running on the Republican Party line. He received an associate degree in management from Nassau Community College, a bachelor’s degree in political science from Hofstra University, and a master’s of divinity degree from New Brunswick Theological Seminary. He worked as an executive assistant and sat on several committees in the Town of Hempstead, and also served as director of the Veteran Services Agency in Nassau County. He is divorced.
Gerth said he wants to plan ahead for more upgrades to the town’s infrastructure and services while maintaining a low tax burden to the island’s residents. He added that community housing should be a priority for the town, and homeowners should be allowed to have short-term rentals to increase their incomes and pay for maintenance costs on their properties. Gerth said the problem with water purity on Shelter Island is multifaceted, and he wants to come up with a comprehensive plan to address those concerns, with assistance from resident volunteer committees. He added that wildlife control is an environmental concern for the town, and he wants to promote controlled forest burns and deer culling to reduce tick-borne illnesses.