SOMERS, N.Y. – Republican Anthony Cirieco is running Nov. 6 to fill a one-year vacancy on the Somers Town Board.
The Somer Daily Voice asked Cirieco to fill out a questionnaire with some basic information. Answers were limited to 150 words. Below are his answers.
Name: Anthony Cirieco
Age: 59 years old.
Family: Wife, Carol, and three children: Elizabeth, 25, Jacqueline, 23 and Matthew, 19.
Occupation: Currently investment manager at Morgan Stanley, Mount Kisco. Twenty-five year career as a chief financial officer in the telecommunications industry; served as global CFO of MCI International for a decade. Education: Bachelor of Science in accounting, Master of Business Administration in finance.
How long have you lived in town: Almost 30 years.
Party affiliation and ballot lines held: Republican and Conservative ballot lines, with support of Supervisor Mary Beth Murphy and the Somers Republican Committee.
Years in office: Presently completing my sixth year as a trustee on the Somers Board of Education.
Other elected positions held: In my capacity as Board of Education trustee, I have chaired the Audit Committee and presently serve on the Citizen’s Finance Committee.
Civic organizations: Over the years I have coached football and lacrosse and was chairman of Scout Pack 210. I have supported my wife’s efforts with the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, where she raised over $200,000 from thousands of community members.
What are the three biggest issues facing the town? Like most municipalities, Somers has slow revenue growth and rising expenses (associated with pension costs, heath care costs, fuel and utilities) that are increasing beyond the 2 percent tax cap; addressing the need to maintain our existing infrastructure and service levels. I am concerned about our senior citizens’ ability to manage on fixed incomes, the portion of the community that may be unemployed, our youth that needs to be kept engaged in meaningful activities and our families that hope to retire here in an affordable fashion.
How would you address those issues?
What this means is that our planning must be prioritized in the context of the climate of slow growth and rising costs. The town needs to look ahead at the 12-month financial picture to prioritize what is urgent, important and nice to have. After answering these questions, the town needs to come up with a three-year plan, identifying risks and opportunities, and then use these as a benchmark to make decisions on projects we would like to accomplish and services we value as a community.
Advocate that all expenditure proposals are assessed for measurable added value and undergo a review of alternatives for the most cost-effective solutions.
As always, I advocate for the coordination of government between schools, town and Fire Department. For example, recreation facilities should be coordinated to insure full utilization, snow removal and road maintenance should be coordinated with schools’ needs in order to reduce costs.
If you are an incumbent, what were your biggest achievements? If you are a challenger or running for an open seat, what would you do differently than the previous office holder? Not applicable.
Westchester is among the highest-taxed counties in the nation. What would you do to lower the tax burden? Be specific.
I will start by saying that I want Somers to remain one of the lowest-taxed towns in Westchester. I advocate that we match expenses with activities levels. In times of slow growth you look to part-time versus full-time personnel commitments. Also, shorten contract terms and be mindful that the town does not get stuck with unsustainable commitments in this low-growth climate. With community involvement, advocate for efficiency of use programs associated with utilities and energy conservation.
Why should people vote for you?
I bring an enormous amount of financial and business experience in challenging economic times. I have proven management skills, budget and planning experience. My background complements the career experiences of other Town Board members. Town Supervisor Mary Beth Murphy is an attorney, Councilman Tom Garrity is a sales professional, Councilman Richard Clinchy is an educator, and Councilman Rick Morrissey is expert in environmental health. As a community leader I have continuity serving the Somers community in lowering costs and maintaining service level priorities in challenging times. I have demonstrated the ability to manage expectations, be a “straight shooter” and bring people together.