by Rick Pezzullo
Three volunteer firefighters and longtime village residents are running on the Tarrytown First and Republican party lines on March 15 to offer voters a choice in the race for three seats on the Board of Trustees.
“We’re hoping to give the people an opportunity to make a choice and see what happens,” said Terence Murphy, current chief of the Tarrytown Fire Department and a lifelong village resident. “We’ll work hard for the village every day.”
“It gives the incumbents a little run for their money,” said John Chang, a 43-year village resident, registered pharmacist and retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army. “In the past they haven’t really been tested. I think it is bad when people stay in a place too long and things don’t get done. It’s good to get somebody in who has fresh ideas. It’s time for someone else to contribute.”
Rounding out the slate is lifelong, third generation village resident and former fire chief Domenic Morabito, Jr., a licensed master electrician in his family business.
“I feel now is the right time to get involved,” he said. “We have a lot to offer and a lot of knowledge. We’re fair and we’re ready to work.”
Murphy is a licensed professional engineer who currently serves as regional manager for New York City Environmental Protection. He said he and his running mates are not looking to stir things up as a voting block, but to work cooperatively with the rest of the board for the betterment of the village.
“Our common goal is what is best for the village,” he said. “These are people we have known for a very long time. Our ideas are not political, they’re good ideas. I think the board will embrace common sense ideas.”
Chang, who noted he supports term limits, said he’s running to try to make a change. He cited a need to get a handle on property taxes in the village.
“We saw taxes go up and people that had lived in our neighborhood had to move out because they were on a fixed income,” he said. “I’ve seen very little from the present administration addressing that issue.”
Morabito agreed, saying, “Taxes are high. They’re a concern for everybody. Seniors are starting to feel it. It comes down to managing your spending.”
Murphy said taxes were “always on the forefront of people’s minds.” He would also like to play a role in cleaning up Tarrytown Lakes.
Chang, who is a member of Tower Ladder 78, said the lack of parking in the village also needs to be addressed and how it is affecting local businesses.
“This has been a long standing issue that has not been resolved. Suggestions have been made, but the board has not acted,” Chang remarked. “It’s only going to get worse. I’m sure merchants are not very happy with the parking situation.”
Morabito said Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow officials should work cooperatively to deal with the mutual challenges the development of the former General Motors site will bring.
“The villages need to work more closely together because decisions they make will impact both villages for a long time to come,” he said. “Once the development is here we’ll all have to deal with it.”
Polls on March 15 will be open in Tarrytown from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.