Letter to editor East Hampton Star
November 4, 2019
In response to recent statements that appeared in the local press regarding Mayor Rickenbach’s opinions about transition plans upon his retirement in December, we would like to make the following clear to the public:
We respect the mayor’s decision to announce his impending retirement in December, and we believe that any decision regarding how best to transition from the mayor’s retirement to the June election should be made openly and transparently.
There is no vacancy at this point and the mayor has indicated he won’t retire until Dec. 31. Should the mayor formally retire in December as he has indicated, we believe the board should have a public discussion at a public meeting before deciding on how best to facilitate the transition.
The most important thing in our opinion is for the village to be efficiently and effectively managed during the transition period until the next mayor is elected in June and installed on July 1.
Jerry Larsen’s false allegation that the village board is being unethical by simply following New York State law after Mayor Rickenbach leaves office at the end of this year is offensive. The law provides that the deputy mayor shall assume the responsibility in the absence of the board appointing a mayor until the next election.
Mr. Larsen’s unethical assertion is unfortunately typical of his self-serving propensities, since it was his own lack of ethics and abuse of authority for his own personal gain during his tenure as village chief of police that precipitated the unanimous decision of the village board to refuse to renew his employment contract with the village in 2016.