East Hampton Town Democrats: Jeanne Frankl

Jeanne Frankl, the Chairman of The East Hampton Democratic Party, was very straightforward about the importance of the coming November election. She said, “This is a crucial election for East Hampton. The current town board has made clear its willingness to sacrifice the commitments to preservation, service and civility that have characterized the Town in favor of short-sighted expedients to cultivate business interests, and wealthy contributors.”

Frankl, a graduate of Yale Law School, went on to say, “So far only fierce public advocacy and their own ignorance of law and procedures has blocked their degrading of the Comprehensive Plan and the town codes that preserve open space, dark skies, quiet nights, protected coastlines, a traditional fishing industry and beach access for the community. For all their claims of transparency and scheduling of multiple open meetings, they have excluded the public, minority board members and even their own board member Dominick Stanzione from decision-making, denied access to documents and ignored public wishes. We need a Town Board majority to restore our traditional respect for the environment and each other.” [expand]

When asked about the East Hampton Democratic candidates for the town board and supervisor, Frankl pointed out, “We have an extraordinary slate of knowledgeable people motivated to run by a desire to serve. Zach Cohen, our candidate for supervisor, is a businessman and financial wizard who, as a citizen, invested himself in thoroughly learning the financial management of the town. As Chairman of the Town Nature Preserve Committee he has worked with people from every part of the community, who appreciate his interest and willingness to take from divergent points of view. His running mates Sylvia Overby and Peter Van Scoyoc are both expert in the town planning law, as Sylvia was chair of the Planning Department and Peter has been a member of for many years. Sylvia, a homemaker, who raised her children in Amagansett and volunteered as chair of the Amagansett Citizens Advisory Committee, knows the challenges of families and small businesses and is determined to enhance the potential for local people to keep living and working here. One of her key concerns is the disrespectful way the Wilkinson-Quigley team has treated town employees and their evident attempt to quell professional opinions that disagree with theirs by intimidation and threats. Peter is a local contractor and charter fishing boat owner. Known for his fairness and adherence to law, he has made it his mission to balance the need to protect the environment with the support of local business. This group of three are bound together by mutual respect and admiration and work together consistently in developing platform and policies.”

When asked why it is important that Democratic candidates win, Frankl said, “Ideally, the Democrats need a majority of the Board to change the course of the town from a narrow minded and exclusionary body to one that works for the whole town. If Democrats elect one or two of our candidates to the town board, their experience and authoritativeness will undoubtedly improve policy making, but ultimately the Supervisor is key. As for the future and her vision, Frankl concluded, “In this election season, Democrats have recruited some exciting young people to run for trustee and help with the campaign. Disturbed by what they see going on in their hamlets, they hail from all different parts of town. With their help in defining our future agenda and reaching out to friends and neighbors, I hope we will erode the cynicism of many young people about politics and convince them that politics is a vehicle for developing the kind of community they want to live in. My goal is to turn the party over to a new generation that shares and elaborates our long standing commitments.”

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