Changes are coming to the Village of Mineola as the March 15 village election nears. Mayor Scott Strauss will not be seeking re-election, and Deputy Mayor Paul A. Pereira is running for the mayoral seat. Running alongside him is current Trustee Janine Sartori and Jeffrey Clark, who has years of community service from serving as chief of the Mineola Fire Department and president of the Irish American Society of Nassau, Suffolk and Queens.
Also running is Village Justice Scott Fairgrieve, who was elected in 2020, and is now seeking a four-year term as village justice. This election is uncontested.
Village Board Election
Pereira has lived in Mineola for more than 40 years and has served on he village board as trustee, and most recently, deputy mayor, for almost 13 years. Sartori has lived in Mineola for 17 years and she served on the board of zoning appeals for four years before being appointed to the trustee position by Strauss at the end of 2020. Clark has lived in Mineola for 35 years and has spent much of that time in community service. All three candidates are a part of the New Line Party.
Mineola American: What have you been most proud of during your years of service?
Pereira: Probably what I am most proud of is that we’ve continued to be fiscally responsible. Our Moody’s Rating has been upgraded several steps since I’ve been on the board back in 2008. We are currently at a double A2 Moody’s Rating, which I think is excellent. We are being good stewards of our fellow resident’s tax-paying dollars. I am also proud of the fact that we’ve been continuing to invest heavily in our infrastructure; our water, our sewer, our roads.
Sartori: The biggest thing I’ve been doing through the tenure is really speaking to more residents and hearing what they love and what they don’t love about the village. I represent everyone now, so I really need to understand what everybody would like to see.
Mineola American: What are your goals if elected/re-elected?
Pereira: My goals are to continue to invest in our infrastructure. We have several projects that are currently underway that the current Mayor Scott Strauss has started, so namely our new water department headquarters, which is now on Westbury Avenue and should open in a few months. We are rehabilitating several of our new wells and that obviously is very costly, but very important. We also have significant work on our sewers… We are in the beginning of building a brand-new firehouse for our volunteer fire department. Those are large capital improvements. Those are large undertakings, so there’s a lot that’s going to be happening in the village. We still have the third track. Obviously that is not our project, but the [Metropolitan Transit Authority] and the Long Island Rail Road will hopefully be bringing that to its conclusion at the end of this calendar year.
Sartori: I think to really finish the infrastructure projects that are on our plate is my first goal… The second priority would be to continue focusing on the downtown and fill some vacancies and make it a thriving place for our residents to go to.
Clark: This is a critical time in the village with downtown development and revitilization and I want to be a part of that. I want to make sure that Mineola is treated right and keeps it charm and that we don’t get overdeveloped. My goal would be to maintain the village suburban way of life and make sure that our parks continue to be the top quality parks they are.
Mineola American: Anything else you’d like to share?
Pereira: We are going to continue focusing on making Mineola the great community that it has been for the last 116 years. We’re invested in this village. I’ve been living in this village for about 45 years. My running mates have also been in this village for decades and decades. We all raise our families here. I work here. I live here. My children go to school here. Janine Sartori’s children go to school here. Jeff Clark’s children went to school in the local schools. We obviously have our entire lives invested in this community and we want to make it the best possible it can be for ourselves and for our community.
Village Justice Election
Fairgrieve has been a Mineola resident for over 40 years and has been found “well qualified” by the Nassau County Bar Association, has published more than 300 decisions and is an adjunct professor at Long Island University teaching business law. He has been a full-time judge for 20 years in the Nassau County District Court and he was elected as village justice in 2020.
Mineola American: What inspired you to be a judge?
Fairgrieve: I like working with people and resolving problems. I also like researching the law and writing opinions. I like writing.
Mineola American: What do you bring to the village?
Fairgrieve: I will continue to be fair and impartial. I treat everybody’s case like it’s the most important case in the world, no matter what amount. And I show great respect to everybody.