KLEINER SAYS RETIRING OFFICIAL WILL LEAVE A VOID, BOARD MUST CHOOSE REPLACEMENT WISELY

To the Editor,

John Giardiello – longtime head of Orangetown’s Office of Building, Zoning, Planning Enforcement and Administration (OBZPAE) – is retiring in July. Twice in the last several weeks I addressed the town board regarding the importance of filling that upcoming vacancy with someone with impeccable credentials, demonstrated independence from political pressure and a keen understanding of planning with a background in engineering.

If that sounds like a big job, it is. Other towns employ several people to do the same job as the top post in Orangetown. The Town Board must cast a wide net to attract the best possible person who can improve customer service in the building department and work with the Board to manage the successful completion of the RPC property, forcefully address environmental matters, such as the continuing issues with Aluf Plastics and other industrial users, and be an informed advisor to the Board on how to best protect the character and integrity of our unincorporated hamlets.

John served as director for the last 23 years. The Town Board must be aware that their decision will have implications for many years to come. This opportunity must not be wasted.

Sincerely,
Thom Kleiner
Sparkill

The author is a Democratic candidate for supervisor of the Town of Orangetown, a position he held from 1996-2010.