The race for East Hampton Village Board now has three slates of candidates, seven in all, fighting for three seats that will be on the June ballot.
On Saturday, Village Trustee and mayoral candidate Arthur Graham announced that he will now be running in tandem with a new candidate, David Driscoll, who will join a now four-way race for one of two trustee seats that will be on the ballot.
“I am proud to announce that David Driscoll will be joining the Fish Hooks Party ticket as a candidate for Village Trustee,” Mr. Graham wrote to supporters and media outlets in an email on Saturday afternoon. “His impressive background and commitment to our Village makes him an ideal candidate.”
Mr. Driscoll, according to a biographical letter from Mr. Driscol that Mr. Graham shared, is a retired New York Police Department officer and the the longtime co-owner of the Main Beach Chowder Bowl snack bar.
In his letter, Mr. Driscoll recounted his role while on the NYPD conducting search and rescue operations at Ground Zero after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, in the evacuation of Breezy Point following Superstorm Sandy and coordinating the department’s response to the crash into the Hudson River of US Airways Flight 1549.
Mr. Driscoll expressed support for Mr. Graham and Village Trustee Rosemarie Brown, the two newest members of the Village Board.
“I am proud and excited to be associated with them under the Fish Hooks Party umbrella,” he wrote. “My life history here in the village, coupled with my professional experience, will prove to be a benefit to the board, as I am able to provide a unique perspective on many issues.”
Mr. Driscoll already joins a surprisingly crowded race. Mr. Graham last week upset what was shaping up to be a contentious race for mayor between Village Trustee Barbara Borsack and Jerry Larsen, the former chief of the East Hampton Village Police Department.
Ms. Borsack is running alongside two trustee candidates: current Mayor Richard Lawler, who was elevated to mayor by a board appointment in January after the retirement of longtime Mayor Paul Rickenbach, and Village Zoning Board of Appeals Co-Chairman Ray Harden. Mr. Larsen is running with political newcomer Sandra Melendez.
Ms. Borsack said on Sunday that she is disappointed that Mr. Graham is now expanding his challenge to the board and that the race has become so crowded.
“I’m mostly disappointed because I thought Tiger Graham and I were friends,” Ms. Borsack said, using Mr. Graham’s nickname. “I think choice is a good thing, but I’m not sure that when you divide the vote this many ways, it’s necessarily a good thing. I would think that with a three-way race, whoever wins needs fewer votes to win … and it might not be a majority.”