Monday, August 08, 2005

Sound Advocate from Long Island is Being Booted from Suffolk's Environmental Council in Favor of a Development Lawyer

Republican Suffolk County legislators want to dump Adrienne Esposito, a committed Long Island Sound advocate, from the county’s Council on Environmental Quality and replace her with John W. Wagner, a real estate attorney who successfully challenged an attempt to protect land in Long Island’s Central Pine Barrens.

Adrienne is the head of Citizens Campaign for the Environment and a member of the Long Island Sound Study’s Citizens Advisory Committee. Newsday reports that Joseph Caracappa, the Suffolk County Legislature’s presiding officer, said she’s being replaced because her activism conflicts with the interests of the council.

But neither Newsday nor Caracappa talk about Wagner’s activism and its conflict with the interests of the council. Here’s what his law firm's website says about Wagner:

Notably, Mr. Wagner was among the small group of land use practitioners that successfully defeated, in the Court of Appeals, the attempt by environmental groups to freeze all development in the “Long Island Central Pine Barrens.” He is currently representing landowners challenging comprehensive zoning changes in the Towns of Brookhaven and Riverhead.

So who do Long Islanders want on the Council on Environmental Quality? An environmentalist or a lawyer who sues on behalf of people who don’t want land protected? And does Caracappa think Long Islanders are so stupid that they’ll accept his reasoning?

Environmentalists and Democrats are rallying to try to get Adrienne reappointed.


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