Schaivoni Retracted LaValle Statement

Michael Heller photo.

Tommy John Schiavoni, the Southampton Town Councilman from Sag Harbor running for New York State Senate, retracted a statement critical of Senator Kenneth P. LaValle shortly after it was released following the announcement of Mr. LaValle’s retirement late last week.

The retraction was not sent to the Express News Group, which published the original release issued by Mr. Schiavoni’s campaign. That statement read: “Not only is this news long overdue — given he’s currently the record holder as the longest-serving member of the Senate — but he’s been an ineffective leader the entire time.”

According to Mr. Schiavoni, he had not reviewed or approved that message. The consultant who drafted that first email, he added, was removed from the campaign.

“Last week a consultant, hired to manage emails for my Campaign, drafted an email regarding the retirement of Senator LaValle which was not representative of me or my campaign,” said Mr. Schiavoni in an email Friday. “The email was blasted out without proper review. Within minutes, my Campaign issued the following clarification:

“A few minutes ago, my campaign sent an email that shouldn’t have been sent,” said Mr. Schiavoni in the follow up email. “It was unnecessarily critical of Senator LaValle.

“Here’s what I want to say: As Senator LaValle heads toward retirement, the people of our district owe him a considerable measure of gratitude for his many decades of service to our community.  Senator LaValle has served Eastern Long Island with distinction. He brought essential funding to our schools and many other vital projects that have built our communities. Also, he has worked to preserve our precious environment. His achievements and legacy will endure for generations to come.

“This day belongs to Kenneth LaValle. He’s a good man, and he has earned our respect. I hope he enjoys his well-deserved retirement.”