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07/04/14 7:00am
The Gershow Recycling plant on Hubbard Avenue in Riverhead. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

The Gershow Recycling plant on Hubbard Avenue in Riverhead. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, file)

To the editor:

You would think that after running a highly negative campaign that yielded just 21 percent in last year’s Republican primary, Tony Coates would alter his snarky approach to Riverhead politics. But after having read his June 27 submission to the Riverhead News-Review, it’s apparent that Mr. Coates is doubling down on his pit bull politics.  (more…)

07/16/13 1:35pm

To the editor:

I want to apologize to the Riverhead taxpayers for the lack of oversight that occurred in the process of trying to obtain certificates of occupancy on my home. My husband owned the home for 17 years before I moved in and all of the improvements existed, with the exception of the addition. While I was newly married and the mother of our very young children, my husband was involved with the permitting of a proposed addition. Unfortunately between dust, dishes, and diapers I lost track of the process my husband had started. When refinancing the home we realized it had not been completed and we acted immediately to come into compliance. To rectify this issue, I have paid all necessary permit fees and penalties required by the Town of Riverhead and will remit payment for back taxes when calculated.

[Related: Coates says Giglio should resign; she says ‘not a chance’]

Though some have used this instance to attack my character, I remain steadfast in my commitment to serving the taxpayers of Riverhead.  Attempts to use this instance as a mudslinging campaign is a clear example of politics as usual —  but I am not a typical politician. I stand proudly on my achievements as a Riverhead Town councilwoman who values fiscally conservative principles. Since I was elected in 2009, I have worked to cut government waste and save much-needed tax dollars by working on code and contracts saving taxpayers $2 million townwide in their garbage tax, vamping up the town’s recycling efforts, subdividing land at EPCAL for high paying jobs, pursuit of the FAA coming to EPCAL and cutting back on spending $1 million. I have done my best to uphold the master plan when it comes to development and to respect the work that the taxpayers and my predecessors put into that plan.

While I am proud to stand on my record as a fiscal conservative, there is still much that needs to be done to make sure Riverhead continues on a path of sustainable growth. We need to continue the revitalization of downtown Riverhead and complete the subdivision at EPCAL. These are the issues that we should be talking about and these are the issues that I have, and will, continue to focus on going forward as a dedicated member of the Riverhead Town Board.

Councilwoman Jodi Giglio

04/12/13 5:00pm
Riverhead Muscle Wall

TIM GANNON PHOTO | A Muscle Wall on display Wednesday afternoon in downtown Riverhead.

To the Editor:

In response to concerns raised online in the News-Review’s coverage of Wednesday’s Muscle Wall demonstration, the Summerwind Square building was engineered, as per the current state Department of Environmental Conservation flood map, so that the building would be raised to an elevation at which it didn’t flood during Hurricane Sandy or the other storms and high tides we have experienced.

I contacted Muscle Wall after the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Suffolk County came to a Town Board work session and said we should start planning for future storm events.

I contacted Muscle Wall due to the flooding of town-owned critical infrastructure, such as sewer and water facilities, and highways.

We should also strive to protect of our historical buildings, such as those at the East End Arts campus, as well as the investment in revitalization of downtown for the small businesses that were catastrophically affected by Sandy and had to close their doors for long periods of time. (Private property owners have received discounts on insurance premiums, according to Muscle Wall.)

Sandy has raised the bar for catastrophic events.  County, state and federal funding will be available for planned mitigation. We as a town should be ready to capture the funding when it is available!

Muscle Wall is FEMA approved, however, we would send out for an RFP to ensure the best practical solution and the protection of the town.

Jodi Giglio

councilperson, Riverhead Town Board

06/07/12 4:00pm

In his recent Guest Spot in the News Review, Anthony Coates, a paid political consultant and campaign manager, launched an attack against us for doing what we were elected to do (“What are these councilpeople thinking?” May 31). Mr. Coates stated he’s written a lot of political ads and campaign strategies. In fact, Mr. Coates creates political spin for his clients. In other words, he manipulates facts to put his clients in a positive light and attack adversaries.

Why are we Mr. Coates’ adversaries? Perhaps it’s because we voted against a job for Mr. Coates that would have paid him close to $100,000 (inclusive of benefits). The job would have been to lobby for the creation of a state authority at the Enterprise Park at Calverton. Trying to get the authority created is something our elected officials in Albany have stated they would do themselves.

We feel well represented by Senator Ken Lavalle and Assemblyman Dan Losquadro.

To say, as Mr. Coates did last week, that we’re trying to kill jobs in Riverhead and that we’re against the farmers is ridiculous!

Jim Wooten grew up in Riverhead. He remembers the Warner potato chip factory. He, along with classmates, went on several field trips there. Of course, this was 45 years ago, when Riverhead only had about 10,000 residents. Jim Wooten is not against the farmers. Most of the farmers still in production today were classmates of his, and lifelong friends.

Jodi Giglio has spent her professional career helping residents and business people get through the bureaucracies of government to achieve their goals. In addition, she’s an entrepreneur and has created jobs.

What we both have campaigned on and stood for is simply, “No special favors for special friends.” When we “pose” for photos in front of flags and business openings, it comes as the result of hard work to open these businesses and take them through all the necessary steps. No favors, no short cuts.

We, as elected officials, must uphold the law and town code. The code states that when a pre-existing, non-conforming use is abandoned for more than a year — as in the case of this property, on which is the Blackman Plumbing warehouse — then an applicant must go before the Zoning Board of Appeals to obtain a special-use permit. By skipping this step, Riverhead Town becomes vulnerable to senseless litigation, which the town would lose for not having followed proper procedures.

Here are the facts, without the spin: neither of us has come out to oppose the J. Kings project; the Zoning Board of Appeals, not the Town Board, will vote on the special use permit; and lastly, we are in favor of projects that help the town, the farmers and the residents by creating jobs and being good neighbors.

But it is our job to ask questions and make sure everything is done properly.

Jodi Giglio (R-Baiting Hollow) and Jim Wooten of (R-Riverhead) are Riverhead councilpeople. Ms. Giglio is a business expediter and Mr. Wooten is a retired Riverhead police officer.