Flower Hill Deputy Mayor Brian Herrington is looking to take the village’s top spot in the March election.
Herrington, who has served as deputy mayor for three of his five years on the board, is running for mayor of the village, and will include current Trustees Randall Rosenbaum and Gary Lewandoski, as part of his Flower Hill Party slate for March’s election. Mayor Robert McNamara will also be running for a trustee position.
Initially appointed as a trustee by former mayor Elaine Phillips, Herrington won two unopposed bids for his seat, and in was appointed deputy mayor by McNamara upon his ascension in 2017.
“I’ve been able to work with a couple of great teams that have been dedicated to good financial management and creating a good financial foundation for the village,” Herrington said in an interview. “We have zero debt as a village, and we’ve cut taxes four of the last six years, so the teams have been committed to that.”
Herrington says the average resident pays between $850 and $900 in taxes to the village, and that he is interested in appointing a resident to serve on the budget committee with the elected officials.
“We’d like more citizen input earlier in the process,” Herrington said. “We have accountants and people who work on Wall Street who may see things in a different light, and may have different ways of being helpful to us.”
Concerning Flower Hill’s ongoing legal conflict with wireless infrastructure provider ExteNet Systems, whose applications for 10 cell nodes were rejected by the village board last year, Herrington says that while the village would “continue to fight that lawsuit,” ExteNet would not be the last provider to come around.
“We’re going to continue to get applications, and we have to make sure the village isn’t inundated with this, because ExteNet came in and they’re trying to get antennas for one provider,” Herrington said. “Another provider could come in and do the same thing.”
Herrington also said he would like to join with other municipalities to create a set plan for antennas so that the areas can get the least amount of nodes possible “if the federal government is going to force this on us.”
“If we’re all in our silo doing this on our own, we could end up with antennas in front, behind peoples houses, and it’s just inundating,” Herrington said “Why not have a comprehensive master plan that we all worked on together to reduce that impact?”
As for the village’s other major issue, speeding, Herrington said different areas of the village are dealing with different problems concerning the cars.
“The Manhasset side is dealing more with cut-thorough traffic down to Northern Boulevard through to Stoneytown, Manhasset Woods, Bonny Heights and neighboring residents speeding down to get to Plandome Road,” Herrington said. “The Roslyn-Port side is dealing with impacts of apps like Waze and Google Maps sending people from Port Boulevard or Northern Boulevard to cut down to each of those roads, or over to the hospital.”
Herrington says he has plans to do a “comprehensive traffic study” to figure out ways to combat the speeding.
“We don’t want just education anymore, we’ve done the ‘Drive Like Your Kids Live Here’ thing, and people get numb to it,” Herrington said. “What physical, traffic-calming measures can we take?”
The deputy mayor also says he wants to create a parks and recreation committee and work on the village’s recycling contract.
A native of Islip and Herrington graduated from SUNY Plattsburgh and Hofstra University’s law program. He served as an aide in the State Assembly, worked for the Suffolk County Executive’s Office and for then-State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo before receiving his current position at the Hawthorne Gardening Company, a subsidiary of ScottsMiracle-Gro. He lives in the Manhasset area of Flower Hill with his wife and two children.
“We’re lucky to live in the best village in Nassau County, and in New York State,” Herrington said.
The Village of Flower Hill’s election will take place on Wednesday, March 18, from noon to 9 p.m. at Village Hall.