The Northern Westchester Examiner

Dry Cleaner to Press Cort Dems for Board Nod

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Domenic Volpe
Domenic Volpe

Domenic Volpe is no stranger to local elections, having been a candidate three times in the past for Westchester County Board of Legislators and twice for the Cortlandt Town Board.

The longtime owner of Domenic’s Cleaners in Peekskill and a 25-year resident of Cortlandt is hoping the third time is a charm in his quest to become a town councilman as he announced plans last week to run a Democratic Party primary in September with community activist Brian Pugh of Croton after the pair were snubbed by district leaders.

“It’s a charm only if you win,” Volpe remarked. “No one cares about that (his past races). It’s experience that sets us apart. Thirty people shouldn’t decide my fate. There are a lot more registered Democrats in the Town of Cortlandt. I want them to have a chance to have a say.”

A few weeks ago, the Cortlandt Democratic Committee selected Debbie Costello, daughter of former Councilman Edward Carter, and former committee chairman Seth Freach to run with Supervisor Linda Puglisi for two seats being vacated by veteran Democratic Town Board members John Sloan and Ann Lindau-Martin.

In his first attempt at public office in 1997, Volpe was initially declared the winner over Sloan but a recount by the Westchester Board of Elections resulted in him falling short by 12 votes.

Volpe, 53, who serves on the board of the Jan Peek Homeless Shelter, is a member of the Hudson Valley Gateway Chamber of Commerce and hosts a community access cable television show, said the odds were always stacked against him in the past since he was trying to oust an incumbent.

“The chances are better. It will still be a tough race, but nothing is easy. I’m used to tough things,” he said. “Linda and the Town Board have been stellar. You’re losing two people from that team. We have a well-oiled machine.”

Pugh, 26, who works for a renewable energy company in Westchester and attends FordhamLawSchool, is proud to be running with Volpe.

“Domenic Volpe is a pillar of this community. As an entrepreneur, he knows the value of a dollar and how to do more with less,” Pugh said. “Domenic would be a strong addition to the Town Board where he would bring a businessman’s perspective.”

Volpe offered similar praise to Pugh. “As a native son, Brian Pugh has strong ties to the community and a deep appreciation for the outstanding quality of life we enjoy in Cortlandt,” Volpe said. “Brian is an innovative thinker and energetic activist. Brian has already done more as a grassroots activist than many people do in elected office. Our town needs someone with Brian’s enthusiasm and fresh perspective.”

Volpe and Pugh will also be seeking the Independence and Working Families party lines, but Volpe stressed they were not interested in being cross endorsed by the Cortlandt Republican Committee, which has yet to announce a slate of candidates.


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