The Concerned Citizens of Montauk's meet the candidates forum will be held at the Montauk Fire Department today at 1 p.m., despite the threatening storm, but because of the storm, Representative Tim Bishop will not attend the event, which would have marked one of his final meetings with his Republican challenger, Randy Altschuler, prior to Election Day.
Mr. Bishop is to meet today with Suffolk County and Federal Emergency Management officials. A campaign staffer will attend the Montauk forum in his place to explain the congressman’s responsibilities relative to disaster preparedness and to apologize for his change of plans, according to C.C.O.M.
The group's meet the candidates event traditionally draws a standing-room-only crowd. Confirmed attendees as of this morning included State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, a longtime incumbent, and his Democratic challenger, Southampton Town Councilwoman Bridget Fleming, as well as Mr. Altschuler. Also on hand will be Wendy Long, who is challenging Kirsten Gillibrand on the Republican and Conservative lines for her Senate seat.
Although most of the candidates have already met in debate-type settings, in Montauk they usually focus on problems specific to the hamlet and the surrounding area. The candidates will introduce themselves and state their positions. They are able to ask one question of their opponents, but in this case, only Ms. Fleming and Mr. LaValle will have that opportunity. The candidates will also take questions from the audience. Admission is free and refreshments will be offered.