PoliticsThe Northern Westchester Examiner

Campaigns in Full Swing for Vacant Seat on Yorktown Town Board

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Donna Diana kickoff event at Shrub Oak Library.

The two candidates vying for the vacant seat on the Yorktown Town Board are gearing up for the July 23 special election.

Last Friday in front of a tree planted by her late husband a few years ago at John C. Hart Library, Donna Diana officially kicked off her campaign, surrounded by Republican and Conservative leaders and supporters.

“My roots are here. I will do everything I can to help the people of Yorktown,” Diana said. “I can give back to the community just like Tom did. I want to get my hands dirty, listen, make good decisions that serve the common good. I believe that being on the Town Board is the best way for me to serve the residents of Yorktown and to keep Tom’s legacy alive.”

Former Supervisor Thomas Diana died unexpectedly in early January, just a few days after being sworn-in to serve his first full two-year term. Councilman Ed Lachterman was elected in April in a special election to succeed Diana. The final three-and-a-half years of Lachterman’s unexpired council seat are what is up for grabs.

“I don’t have a more trusted confidante than my wife and that was the same with Tommy,” Lachterman said at Diana’s rally. “We need someone who is positive, who has fresh ideas. We need to be able to listen and help keep Yorktown moving forward.”

Councilman Sergio Esposito said Diana was a big influence on her husband during his time as councilman and supervisor.

“She was the intelligence behind the operation. She was always on Tom’s side,” Esposito said. “I know Tom is looking down on you smiling from ear to ear. Today you are at the forefront embarking on a new journey. (She is) the only the choice in this next election—the people’s choice.”

Standing in Diana’s way is former Supervisor and Councilwoman Susan Siegel, who was endorsed by the town’s Democratic Committee.

Siegel, a fixture in the audience at town meetings who often addresses the boards on issues, reacted to the remarks made at Diana’s press conference that were directed at her.

“I found it very hypocritical that the Republicans would characterize me of being negative and lacking in fresh ideas. Sometimes people can’t take constructive criticism. And instead of responding with facts they accuse you of being negative to divert attention. Adults, especially government officials, must be mature enough to respond rationally to constructive criticism,” Siegel remarked.

“I’ve constructively criticized our all-Republican Town Board because it has been unable to get things done over the past three years,” she continued. “Look at the ATV issue. After doing nothing for over two years, it took a tragic accident for the board to begin to consider a law regulating ATVs. And when it finally did release a draft law, it was so flawed it had to go back to the drawing board – twice. In fact, the latest version the board is considering includes text that I helped draft with other members of the Yorktown Trail Committee.”

Siegel is president of the Yorktown Trail Town Committee and said she will offer praise when it’s deserved.

“I can also be positive when the board deserves credit. Like when the board, under former supervisor Slater, decided to complete the cost saving installation of smart water meters, a program I started when I was supervisor in 2010-2011 but which was virtually halted by my Republican successor,” she said.



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