Southampton Councilman Chris Nuzzi (R-Westhampton Beach) made an official announcement on Thursday, May 16, that he has received the Republican nomination to run for Suffolk County Legislator in the 2nd Legislative District this November. The Town Councilman is currently serving his second term as a member of the Southampton Town Board. His announcement is below.
“I’m excited about this campaign and eager to continue the dialogue with residents about the importance of fiscal stability in government and tending to the business and environmental preservation needs of our community. I believe that the conservative budgeting practices put in place within Southampton Town that have brought about surpluses and no tax levy increases for three years can be replicated in Suffolk County. In addition, I will fight for a restructuring of aspects of County government that will better address the needs of our business community as well as a renewed commitment to environmental preservation. This will be a campaign of ideas and throughout the upcoming months, I look forward to a continued working partnership with the residents of this special community.”
Chris Nuzzi is a lifelong resident of Suffolk County and was born and raised on the East End of Long Island. He has extensive knowledge of local South Fork issues and deeply values our unique cultural heritage and natural beauty of the East End. He currently works for Skyline TRG Title Agency, a title company with national affiliates and a part of the world’s largest real estate company, Realogy.
Since taking office in 2006, Nuzzi has sponsored legislation pertaining to quality of life issues and code enforcement, including legislation establishing a town wide rental permit law and more stringent residency requirements to protect our families from sex offenders. He has sponsored laws to improve town zoning codes, protect the environment and promote tax relief for residents. He was also at the forefront of the successful move to bury the unsightly LIPA transmission lines that marred the scenic route from Southampton Village to Bridgehampton.
Chris Nuzzi has a record of strong fiscal initiatives and understands that taxpayers are having to do more with less during these difficult economic times and believes that government should too. He implemented a hiring freeze that cut taxes and reduced Town staff by 15% through attrition over the past 5 years, saving Southampton taxpayers more than $4 million a year and avoided layoffs. Through reorganization and cross training of staff, town departments have continued to provide services to residents at a significant savings. Chris has also held the line on taxes while increasing the fund balance, and has been instrumental in helping the town maintain a zero percent increase to the tax levy over the past 3 years.
Nuzzi is an avid boater and fisherman and has made the protection of our environment and the quality of our bays and harbors a major focus of his tenure in town government. He successfully advocated for the dredging and maintenance of the Shinnecock Inlet. Nuzzi also spearheads the Great East End Clean-Up, an annual event to remove litter and debris from roadways, beaches and public areas throughout the Town of Southampton, and a Plastic Bag Education Task Force that promotes the reduction, reuse and recycling of single-use plastic bags.
As Town Councilman, Chris has continually worked to bolster small business and economic growth, including strongly opposing the MTA Payroll Tax, streamlining land use applications and establishing a Business Advisory Council and Project Development Council. He is a member of The Friends of the 106th, a community group that advocates for the Air National Guard base at Gabreski, and has travelled to Washington DC several times to advocate for keeping the base at Gabreski Airport open. He has also fought to preserve the fishing and tourism industries that are vital to the identity and economy of the east end by working to secure funding for the reconstruction of Dune Road, opposing steep reductions in catch limits, allowing for sidewalk dining, and loosening the rental permit law by permitting two week residential rentals, a vital component of our resort industry.
Other issues of importance to Nuzzi are affordable housing and sustainable economic development that keeps environmental sensitivities in mind while providing for the needs of Southampton‘s working families. As the father of a young family, he recognizes the importance of maintaining an affordable housing stock for working families and jobs to allow them the ability to live in the community where they grew up. He spearheaded efforts on the state level to provide an exemption from the 2% Community Preservation Fund Transfer Tax for first-time homebuyers, making homeownership in Southampton more affordable for young families. Nuzzi also worked on and voted in support of the Gabreski airport master plan, which allows for 400,000 square feet of commercial development, including a hotel and conference facility at the airport through the Hampton Business District, diversifying the job base for local people.
Nuzzi also lends his support to several community groups and Town committees including the Sons of Italy, the Southampton Business Alliance, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Long Island, Hamptons Collegiate Baseball, Friends of the 106th, the Parrish Art Museum Business Council, Westhampton Beach High School Business Advisory Board, Shinnecock Marlin & Tuna Club, the Southampton Bocce League, and the Southampton Town Solid Waste Advisory Committee, Business Advisory Council, Project Development Council and Housing & Quality of Life Task Force.
Nuzzi has a Masters Degree in Public Policy from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He resides in Westhampton Beach with his wife Sandy, and their four sons.