Election 2013: Meet Your Candidates for Tax Assessor

Laverne Tennenberg and Gregory Fischer are candidates for tax assessor.

Four-year term (full time)
Salary: $74,449/$84,047 for chair

Laverne Tennenberg
Hamlet: Riverhead
Occupation: Assessor
Party lines: Republican, Conservative

About her: Ms. Tennenberg, 55, is a Riverhead native and Hofstra University graduate. First elected in 1989, she has served as chair of the town Board of Assessors since 1997. In 1996, she was admitted to the lnstitute of Assessing Officers and was designated a professional assessor. She previously served as president and treasurer of the Suffolk County Assessors’ Association and is treasurer of the New York State Assessors’ Association.

Her pitch: Ms. Tennenberg says her knowledge and experience are crucial to the operation of the office, especially with the Basic STAR registration process currently underway. One of her areas of concentration, she says, is in ensuring that the residences of those living in manufactured home communities are assessed fairly and equitably. She also assists seniors with exemptions, does splits and assemblage of properties and manages the assessment software system, among other duties. She has overseen the computerization of the office.

Her words: “Experience counts and you can count on me to get the job done.”


Gregory Fischer
Hamlet: Calverton
Occupation: Business/strategic consultant, patented inventor, advocate/whistle-blower
Party lines: Democrat, Independence

About him: Mr. Fischer, 57, has three business degrees and over three decades’ experience in industry, accounting, economics and planning. His government and civic experience includes work with the Calverton Civic Association, the City of New York and the U.S. Department of Justice. He has filed lawsuits that are in progress and aimed at breaking up the Long Island Power Authority and forcing an election of trustees to run the utility. He describes himself as an “insourcer” that works to create American jobs.

His pitch: Mr. Fischer calls taxes the people’s money and says properties must be assessed fairly, with incoming taxes spent wisely and frugally. He feels this isn’t being done and wants to bring more transparency to the assessor’s office. He says commercial assessments are unjustifiably low, forcing residential taxpayers to subsidize businesses. He also believes the assessor’s office can be used to provide a source for “local stimulus” to benefit town taxpayers.

His words: “I promise to navigate Riverhead toward a better controlled government and proper development.”