WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – Westchester County Legislator John G. Testa (R-Peekskill) is retiring after 22 years of public service.
The 60-year-old Testa, the minority leader of the legislature, is in his fifth two-year term representing District 1, which covers portions of Cortlandt, Peekskill and Yorktown.
His political career began in 1997 as a Peekskill city councilman. He then served three terms as mayor of Peekskill.
“I want to thank the communities I have represented for the continued support given to me over the years,” Testa said in a press release. “It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve and now it is time to pass the torch and step back from elected office.”
For much of Testa’s political career, he remained an educator at Peekskill High School, his alma mater. He retired from teaching in 2013 after 33 years.
Testa said his fiscally conservative approach to governing helped “put policies in place that preserved essential services, kept taxes flat, supported public-private partnership agreements for Playland and Westchester County Airport, the North 60 Biotech project, and protected local home-rule control for Westchester municipalities over federal government overreach.”
“My record of fiscal responsibility is one I am very proud of,” he said. “I wanted to also elevate the standing of Northern Westchester communities in county government and bring the appropriate resources and infrastructure improvements we deserve. I was particularly pleased to bring an office to Peekskill that provides free legal services for eligible Northern Westchester veterans, seniors and victims of domestic violence.”
Testa also touted initiatives that rehabbed county roads across Northern Westchester, brought improvements to county sewer treatment facilities and local county parks, supported veteran groups, expanded programs for youth and seniors, improved public safety and supported businesses. Testa said he was proud to support “environmentally sensitive laws and initiatives.”
“Although I am leaving public service, I intend to remain active and continue to contribute to my community,” Testa said. “I will now have more time to dedicate to the Lincoln Depot Museum [which celebrates Peekskill’s link to the 16th president] and emerging business responsibilities. More opportunity to travel, read and learn is very attractive to me. Most importantly, I look forward to more time with my family and being a soon-to-be grandfather.”