Tom Tweedy would be an excellent choice for town council even if he wasn’t running in the Town of Hempstead.
But with more than 100 years of control Hempstead Republicans have come to operate the town more like a private organization whose first priority is to protect patronage jobs for them and their families than serve the public good.
Laura Gillen, who became the first Democrat elected town supervisor in more than 100 years, recently proposed five money-savings measures that the Republican town council members tabled, providing a further demonstration of the cost to taxpayers of the GOP’s focus.
One of the five was a contract to digitize the clerk’s office, create greater transparency and get rid of the 72 typewriters needed to run the office. Typewriters. In 2019. And the measure was tabled.
Tweedy, a former Republican mayor and trustee of Floral Park, backed Gillen in her run for supervisor and though still a registered Republican is running as a Democrat against what he calls the corruption, nepotism and patronage problems in the town.
His aim, he said, is to create a fiscally responsible local government.
He said he was particularly interested in developing a plan to fix the town’s roads and infrastructure – a job that he said his construction background made him particularly well suited to perform.
Tweedy, who initially opposed the LIRR’s third track project, said that his criticizing the project, negotiating for benefits such as a grade crossing eliminations and working with other mayors on the LIRR Main Line made for a better project.
He said he supports the Belmont project that has brought the Islanders back to Long Island because it will result in more permanent jobs.
Tweedy is opposed by Thomas E. Muscarella, a Republican from Garden City, who was appointed after then-Councilman Edward Ambrosino resigned due to pleading guilty on corruption charges in early April.
Thomas E. Muscarella is not to be confused with brother Vincent Muscarella, a longtime county legislator who is running for re-election.
Or brother Joseph Muscarella, an Oyster Bay town councilman. Or brother Ignatius L. Muscarella, a Nassau County District Court judge.
Tweedy called Muscarella a “poster boy of nepotism.” He makes a good point.
Muscarella makes clear he supports the Republican majority on the Town Board, saying he backed the GOP majority’s budget proposals.
He also said the 2nd Councilmanic District is “under assault” by two projects.
He said the third track is having a major adverse quality-of-life impact on the communities of the 2nd District and the Belmont project has the potential to “devastate” our neighborhoods.
He said he is an advocate for sustainable development but not what Gov. Andrew Cuomo is doing with both projects.
Blank Slate Media endorses Tweedy.