Today is an exciting day. I just attended a press conference with County Executive George Latimer, where he announced that I have been appointed to be the next Director of the Westchester County Consumer Protection Department. This is a terrific opportunity where I have the opportunity to continue my public service while taking on a new challenge. This office is critically important in combating the all too common abuses that consumers face every day. I greatly look forward to being a voice for the people of Westchester as I work diligently to protect you from problems like identify theft, unlicensed home improvement contractors, abusive soliciting, and other scams.
While I’m obviously excited about today’s announcement, it’s bittersweet since it means that I must resign as County Legislator. A special election will be called within 90 days to fill my seat. This is my 21st year as a County Legislator, and it’s been the best professional experience in my life – from working on legislation to helping constituents with questions and problems – I enjoyed it all and take great pride in all that I accomplished as a legislator. I always said we must put people over politics as a legislator, and I do that today as I accept this new position.
I must thank the hundreds of friends who helped me in all my campaigns and who worked with me on the policy issues that faced our county. I was able to serve as an independent elected official because I was fortunate to enjoy the support of people from all political parties and viewpoints. I loved working on issues like promoting fiscal responsibility, protecting our environment, reforming our government and preserving our neighborhoods. I will surely miss being a County Legislator.
I want to thank County Executive Latimer for this kind offer, and I look forward to working with him again (we served together as county legislators). I have promoted bipartisan and professional governance for over 20 years, and my new position is an opportunity to demonstrate that Republicans and Democrats can work together to improve Westchester. (Yes, I’m remaining a registered Republican). I also want to thank the two former county executives, all the county legislators and the legislative staff I worked with for the past 21 years – it was wonderful to make so many great friends during my public service. But most importantly, I thank the people of New Rochelle and Pelham who elected me 11 times – I can never thank you enough and will always be grateful that you put your faith and trust in me. Please remember that I remain a public servant and will continue to help you however I can.
Lastly, my family stood by me every step of the way on this journey, and I could not have achieved anything without them, especially Jean and Mikey who have given me so much love and support.
Thanks again for your support, trust and friendship over the past two decades. I promise to keep working hard to protect your consumer rights as I work with the team at the Consumer Protection Department to run the most dynamic, accessible and successful office possible.
Consumer Protection Website: https://consumer.westchestergov.com
(This statement was publicly released on February 16, 2018)