Hope to unseat Independence Party incumbents
By Jeff Simms
Four candidates have announced plans to run for the two seats in the 25-member Dutchess County Legislature that represent Beacon and parts of Fishkill.
County legislators serve two-year terms and every seat is contested at the same time. It meets on the second Tuesday of each month at the County Government building at 22 Market St. in Poughkeepsie.
Candidates have until July 13 to collect signatures to appear on the Sept. 12 primary ballot. Signature requirements vary based on the number of registered voters in each district.
John Forman and Jerry Landisi, incumbents in the 16th and 18th districts, respectively, both say they will run to keep their seats. Each is a member of the Independence Party but has been endorsed by the Beacon Republican Committee.
Forman, who lives in Fishkill, seeks his seventh term. He is the chair of the Legislature’s Environmental Committee and serves on the Family and Human Services Committee, as well as the Dutchess County Jail and Transition Center Advisory Committee.
He will be challenged by Frits Zernike, a Beacon resident who has been endorsed by the Beacon Democratic Committee. Zernike served on the Transit Oriented Development committee under mayors Steve Gold and Randy Casale. He ran the St. Clair Ice Cream Co. for 10 years and holds a degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law. He has also been endorsed by the Working Family Party.
In the 18th district, Landisi, who lives in Beacon, is serving his first term. He previously served on the Beacon City Council from 2010 to 2011. Landisi is on the Legislature’s Public Works and Capital Projects Committee, the Family and Human Services Committee, and is the liaison to the Criminal Justice Council, Hudson Valley Regional Council and Elder Abuse Council. He also was endorsed by the Beacon Republican Committee.
Nick Page, a Beacon resident endorsed by the Beacon Democrats, will challenge Landisi. Page rehabs homes and is pursuing a law degree at Pace University.