Citizens' Party Candidate Phil Guarnieri is seeking a two year term as trustee in the Floral Park Village Election on Tuesday, March 18. On the ballot with Phil is Ann Corbett. Both Citizen Party Candidates are unopposed.
Phil was appointed trustee by Mayor Steve Corbett in April of 1995. He told The Dispatch that he is looking forward to meeting the challenges ahead: "Floral Park is a very special place to live and our village board is committed to promoting policies that will enrich the quality of life for all our residents. This is our first priority. Our village board is committed to maintaining the natural landscape of our village, encouraging wholesome recreational activities and maintaining a reasonable tax base without sacrificing the existing high quality of village services."
Since his appointment as trustee, Phil has served as library commissioner, new resident committee chairman, fire commissioner and chairman of the newly formed Planning and Recodification Committee. Phil noted that "these diverse responsibilities have provided me with a greater appreciation of the cultural richness of our village, as well as a deeper understanding of the many present day issues affecting the public health, safety and general welfare of Floral Park."
Before his appointment to the village board, Phil was an active member of his community for 20 years. Phil commented that his interest in public service was inspired by having grown up in Floral Park and being educated in the Floral Park School system. "I felt a great sense of indebtedness to my community and a need to repay in kind to others what had over the years, been so generously given to me," he said.
Phil served three terms as president of the local Republican Club and is currently the Republican executive leader of Floral Park - Bellerose. A three term member of the recreation committee, Phil is also a proud member of the Knights of Columbus, a two term chairman of the Citizens' Party, a two term president of the Southside Civic Association and also served as a member of the Board of Zoning Appeals, the second most important board in the village.
Phil says that being involved in his community was both an informative and enriching personal experience. "One of the great strengths of Floral Park lies in the depth and quality of its volunteer efforts and the extraordinary talents that are made available to the community on a daily basis. "Our village," Phil proudly noted, "truly resonates with a spirit of cooperative enterprise."
In addition to his service to the Village of Floral Park, Phil has had a long and distinguished career in government. Having been an executive assistant to the Town Board of Hempstead, Phil is widely experienced in matters pertaining to zoning, internal affairs, community and public management. Having worked under three presiding supervisors in the nation's largest township, Phil is well versed in the background information necessary to the enactment of local laws and ordinances, and has consulted with numerous civic, business and community leaders on a wide variety of legislative matters. He presently serves as deputy receiver of taxes for the Town of Hempstead.
His governmental experience is one of the reasons Mayor Corbett chose him as chairman of the Planning and Recodification Committee, the most important village committee for the last 40 years. As Phil noted, "The pattern of land utilization and our zoning code embody the deepest values about community life and answers the most fundamental questions about who we are, and how we want to live."
In addition to promoting the architectural character and appearance of commercial buildings and residential dwellings, Phil pointed out that the village board is also actively engaged in creating an environment of economic stability and viability for the entire village. "We want our business community to be strong and flourishing and we are seeking to accomplish this by energetically and imaginatively pursuing policies that will ensure that there is an adequate supply of parking for shoppers, merchants and other visitors via our merchant permit parking program, which we are seeking to expand by encouraging continued improvement in the utilization of metered parking spaces and ensuring convenient and safe traffic flow on village streets with a special emphasis on our downtown commercial areas," he said.
Phil explained that one of the village' s primary objectives will be to hold the line on taxes, assuring that the incidence of taxation will be supportive of community ideals and not to overburden our residents or to suffocate the creative and entrepreneurial energies of our village.
The village board is not content to follow Floral Park into the 21st Century, but is determined to lead it. This is why we have called our initiatives to the future "Project 2000", which is a vision for the community, a plan of action to explore and realize the promise and possibilities of village life in the 21st century.
It is this bold vision that makes me proud to be a member of this village board and to be running with such a dedicated public servant as Ann Corbett.
Born in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, Phil moved to Floral Park during childhood where he now resides with his wife, Sonia. He graduated from St. John's University, where he received his BA and MA degrees in history.