5 trustees, village justice running in two Port villages

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Sands Point Mayor Edward Adler.

Three trustees from Sands Point and two trustees and the village justice from Manorhaven have filed to run for election in June.

All will run unopposed.

Sands Point Mayor Edward Adler and Trustees Kay Ullman and Marc Silbert are all seeking re-election, and Manorhaven Trustees Rita Di Lucia and John Popeleski and village Justice Peter Gallanter are all running.

Trustees serve two-year terms and the village justice has a four-year term.

Adler, who was elected to the board in 1991 and became mayor in 2011, said he is running for re-election because he still loves being involved.

“I love giving back to the community,” Adler said. “It’s a hard job that is very complex so you have to be dedicated and put in a lot of time, but I love being involved.”

Adler has lived in Sands Point for 40 years, and when he first joined the board, he was commissioner of the Building Department.

The then mayor was having problems with the department, Adler said, and when he took over the department, he spent years fixing the problems.

“We made it that residents felt the Building Department was responsible and responsive,” Adler said.

For the next 10 years on the board, Adler served as the police commissioner, where he said the “main job was putting the force in the strongest possible position in term of quality of leadership and officers.”

Adler said the village is beginning new projects, including new conservation methods for residents and the Water Department, negotiating with the PBA for a new police contract and work on the Village Club of Sands Point.

Adler, who lived in New York City before moving to Sands Point, is an attorney who runs a real estate development business.

Ullman, who was elected to the Board of Trustees in 1994, moved to Port Washington in 1951.

She said she is running for re-election because she believes volunteering for the village is “extremely important.”

“I think we have a pretty harmonious board and it’s been like that for most of the years I’ve been on the board,” Ullman said. “If we don’t agree completely, we work until everyone is happy on the board and hopefully the public, too.”

From 1979 to 1991, Ullman sat on the Port Washington school board to initiate change, rather than be someone who settles for it, she said.

While serving on the school board, Ullman said, she was faced with the difficult task of redistricting 50 percent of the children because the district was losing students.

She said that at the school’s peak, there were about 7,000 students, but suddenly there was a drop, which forced the redistricting.

In 1994, Ullman said, she ran for a village trustee seat, seeking to use her experience on the school board to get the public more involved in village government.

She was elected and said she eventually learned the difference between the two boards: “The school board had much more support of many administrators and school members. The Board of Trustees need to work together as five people in order for things to get done for the village.”

Ullman is the village’s roads commissioner.

“Port Washington is a close community and when you come to Port, there is nowhere else to go,” she said. “I think we’re a really great community.”

Marc Silbert has been a trustee since 2001 and serves as the police commissioner and chief emergency manager.

Efforts to reach Silbert were unavailing.

When Jim Avena was elected mayor of Manorhaven last June, he appointed Popeleski to fill his trustee seat.

Popeleski, who worked for the Port Washington Water District for 29 years, said his time on the board has been very educational.

“I find being a trustee very rewarding,” he said. “As a board, we’re moving forward in the right direction and want to keep plugging away at the important things in the village.”

Popeleski, who has lived in Manorhaven since 1999, is the president the Atlantic Hook and Ladder Company in Port Washington and is also an ex-captain.

He said he is running to continue improving on the gains the village has made in the past year, including improving the infrastructure by getting a road study and sewer study completed and improving snow removal and keeping the streets clean.

“The streets are a lot cleaner,” he said. “If you drive around the village, you’ll see a big difference, not because the village was dirty but because we fine tuned a lot of things.”

Di Lucia and Gallanter did not respond to a request for comment.

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