Richard Myers notified the East Hampton Republican Party that he will not run for town supervisor come November after all, despite the fact his name appears on the top line on the final petition filed with the Suffolk County Board of Elections.
There was speculation Myers never planned to square off against the incumbent but had agreed at the behest of party chairman Manny Vilar to serve as a placeholder.
The GOP committee hierarchy, as well as the Independence Party and an offshoot of the town’s Democratic Party, had hoped to lure Jeffrey Bragman, a first-term Democratic councilman, into the race. But Bragman, despite some mild interest initially, never seriously considered a run, sources said, though the window has not closed yet.
The GOP will hold interviews on Wednesday, April 10, ostensibly with the goal of choosing another candidate.
However, The Independent has learned the designation will go to David Gruber, the renegade former Democratic Party chairman who is mounting a three-pronged attack against the incumbent, Democrat Peter Van Scoyoc.
“Manny has kept all the points and the charts,” Myers said as The Independent went to press. “There is no bad blood. My record speaks for itself.” Vilar originally championed Myers but coveted Bragman.
Myers is the long-time chairman of the East Hampton Town Architectural Review Board, a former chair of the Wainscott Citizens Advisory Committee, and a 30-year resident of the hamlet. Gruber’s faction of the Democratic Party, the local GOP party, and the Independence Party all oppose Van Scoyoc because of his passive resistance to the Deepwater Wind project, which would run an underground cable through Wainscott, should it survive a lengthy state review.
Elaine Jones, the Independence Party head, said the idea of a coalition lining up behind Bragman was to stop the Deepwater project.
But Jones and others said there is growing optimism Gruber could take over the helm with the coalition of support. “We are running real people, not politicians,” she said, adding that she did not rule out a scenario wherein Gruber would ascend to the top of the ballot on four different party lines.
Southampton Highway Superintendent Alex Gregor said this week he will square off against Supervisor Jay Schneiderman in an Independence Party primary June 25. Gregory Robins is the Southampton Republican Party candidate. “I think I can do a better job,” Gregor said. He said he is concerned Schneiderman may pursue an idea advanced by Shinnecock Hills Golf Club to partially close Tuckahoe Road.