After nearly a decade with the town of Gates, Mark Assini resigned Wednesday night as the town supervisor.
“I’m a big believer in term limits. I’ve been here almost ten years as a town supervisor," Assini said. "I’ve done other roles as a public service, that’s enough. Give other people an opportunity. It’s no more simple than that.”
Assini has been in public service 22 years, even challenging the late Louise Slaughter for the 25th Congressional district in 2014; an election he lost by a narrow margin. He is now moving into the private sector, as chief administration officer for American Rock Salt out of Livingston County.
“It is the largest rock salt mine in the United States, I think the second largest in the world," Assini said. "So it’s a big, big outfit, a big company and a big responsibility, and I can’t be happier.”
With the town since 2011, town clerk Cosmo Giunta is taking over the position of town supervisor. As town supervisor, he wants to focus on community engagement.
“Trying to keep taxes low, trying to keep our neighborhood and communities safe, and more community involvement," Giunta said. "I think we need to unite our community.”
As for Assini, even though he is going into the private sector, he says he isn’t giving up on the issues he cares about, like the Open Door Mission for homeless moms and their children, and Gates to Recovery to battle the opioid crisis.
“I’m going to focus on the areas that I can be effective in," Assini said. "I won’t take on the big political issues anymore, I’ll leave that to somebody else, but I’ll focus on the areas in my community that I can be effective in. So I’m not going away.”
This also includes his fight for a federal investigation into the selection and location of a local photonics lab.
“They’re hoping I go away, but on that, I want all the facts to come out," Assini said. "I don’t like the fact that people in this community were lied to and taken advantage of, and they were. And we will bring those facts out and prove it.”
With such a lengthy record, Giunta says he has some big shoes to fill.
“Supervisor Assini is very loved and well respected in the community, and I hope to continue that," Giunta said. "Keep an open door policy with everyone too, and again, build unity within our community.”