Equal Time: All this, while the supervisor supposedly worked ‘part time’

02/21/2011 5:08 PM |

I read with a bit of a chuckle former Riverhead supervisor Vinny Villella’s column last week regarding Supervisor Sean Walter’s pay package and law practice. In outlining the supervisor’s compensation package, Mr. Villella got the numbers correct but other than that there were few facts in his missive.

Shall we say the rest of the column was an attempt to put a “high-gloss shine” on the story?

Yes, Mr. Walter does receive a pay package as outlined in town law. Mr. Villella received the same type of package, adjusted for inflation, when he was supervisor and so did Mr. Walter’s predecessor, Phil Cardinale. Mr. Villella rails against the fact that Mr. Walter still has his law office open in Wading  River, yet I seem to remember that Mr. Cardinale kept his law office open in Jamesport during his 10 years in town government. Mr. Villella also calls Mr. Walter a “part-time supervisor.” Well, Mr. Walter has been town supervisor for 13 months and in that time we see the earliest buds of turning downtown around. One can hear circular saws and hammers at the Suffolk Theatre, while under Mr. Cardinale the theater was shuttered. The new Hyatt grows closer to reality daily. The former owner of the Frisky Oyster restaurant is developing a beautiful new restaurant in the old Chase building. The Red Collection sells antiques and furniture in the old Ben Franklin building. Dark Horse Restaurant is open for business and looking great. The planned Summerwind project will bring foot traffic to  Main Street. A Long Ireland Brewing brewery and tasting room is coming to Polish  Town. The Blue Door moved to Roanoke Avenue and a new eatery is going in its place. Cody’s barbecue restaurant moves in, replacing the eyesore that was Casa Rica. Athens Grill and Riverhead Grill have had impressive makeovers and all this has happened in this poor economy.

And reality is finally setting in at the Enterprise Park at Calverton, as the town has shed two of Mr. Cardinale’s pet projects — the Rechler housing deal and the mother of all bad ideas, the Riverhead Resorts project and its indoor ski mountain. The Town Board recently sowed the seeds for a reuse plan that will bring clean and high-paying technology-related jobs to EPCAL.

Working with the DEC, Mr. Walter successfully pushed through reform of the Wild Scenic Rivers Act that will allow commercial development on West Main Street. Mr. Walter stood by the courage of his convictions to make dramatic cutbacks and reduce the size of town government, something Mr. Cardinale said “needed to be done” but never had the political courage to do. Mr. Walter cut through the chatter and finally got the rail spur to Calverton. Mr. Walter fought off noisy helicopters over Riverhead, has taken the first steps to reform our animal shelter, got Wading River Creek dredged and, working with Suffolk County in a bad economy, he has preserved more farmland and open space than any 13-month period in the Cardinale or Villella administrations.

Whew! With that track record of results, if you want to wrongly call Mr. Walter a “part-time supervisor” give me a part-timer any time.

Mr. Pickersgill owns Robert James Salon & Spa in downtown Riverhead and is president of the downtown Business Improvement District management association.

Comments

comments

5 Comment

  • Sorry Ray, you are a nice guy, but we all know you are Sean’s friend. Much of this progress was already in the works, though I admit Phil did not do much to help downtown. You give him way too much credit. What about the town’s financial fiasco, which Sean only makes worse by his undying support for the inept financial administator. The taxpayers get fleeced unnecessarily, thanks to Sean. Plus, he admits to flying blind on the town finances!! What good is more business if the town doesn’t have someone that can provide the necessary financial oversight. What about the havoc Sean and his administration have wreaked on town employees and services, all in the name of supposedly “saving money”. Yes, imagine how much more damage he could do if he was full-time!!

  • THE CREEK GOT DREDGED WITH EVERY ADMINISTRATION
    DARK HORSE STARTED UNDER THE PAST ADMINISTRATION
    HYATT STARTED WITH THE PAST ADMINISTRATION
    SUMMER WINDS STARTED UNDER THE PAST ADMINISTRATION
    AND THE LIST GOES ON…….
    THIS IS FUNNY JUST AS FUNNY AS HEARING THAT MR.WALTER DID NOT REPRIMAND A DEPT HEAD WHEN THE DEPT HEAD THREW HIMSELF ON THE FLOOR IN A HISSY FIT TANTRUM SO HE CAN GET HIS POINT ACROSS .YES FRIENDS THIS COMEDY SHOW IS NEVER ENDING…..
    COME BACK NEXT WEEK FOR THE CONTINUING SAGA OF WALTERS COMEDY CLUB…….

  • I agree. Undue credit being given to Wacky Walters Comedy Club for any progress. He didn’t shed the bad Epcal deals. He hung on till they dumped him. Lays off town employees and then wants to bring in consultants at 10 times the cost. Sticks with an incompetent financial administrator and after the layoff discovers 600 grand! Come on, this has to stop, Where are the audits? How many more people do we have to hire to help the incompetent? Doesn’t want competition for special friends? Let’s end the cozy arrangements and get back to business. Walters has to go, along with his little club.

  • The last time the stylist got so hot about about anything his massage table caught on fire.

    Save the sychophantic gibberish for the cows you tell look like Angelina after they get your overpriced blow.

  • The supervisor claims…Were cutting into bone marrow with the budget. Is he kidding us!.. Go check on those hard working town employees and see if they are working. Put gps in all the town fleet especially in the highway trucks! In those big red trucks you will find two grown fat men riding around in circles to avoid work! Make those employees give concessions not pander to them. If thats not what they want to do… then contract their work out…heck most highway work is already! If that dump is a testimony to towns progress we are in deep trouble as a society! BeaverDam Creek is already shows signs of leachate, will the Carmans River be next?