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Legislator Zambito throwing his hat in the ring for County Attorney job

By Howard B. Owens

(Updated 8:17 a.m., Tuesday)

Charles Zambito -- currently the county legislator serving District 2 (Elba, Byron and Bergen) -- would very much like to be the new county attorney.

With the retirement of John Rizzo this month, Zambito has let his fellow legislators -- who will pick the new county attorney -- know that he would like the job.

"It’s something that I had my eye on if there was an opening, but who knew if there would be an opening?" Zambito said Monday afternoon. "This is the opportunity and I’m interested."

Inarguably, the Elba resident is qualified. He's clerked for two local judges, worked as a public defender in Monroe County and spent 11 years in the local district attorney's office. He's also got decades of experience in insurance liability and litigation, not to mention the more than eight years he's served as a county legislator.

"Obviously, my experience with the county legislature got me interested in it, but it’s the kind of job that sort of fits with what I’ve been doing for the past almost 30 years," Zambito said.

The legislature will meet in closed session on Wednesday morning to discuss the county attorney position. Zambito's application for the job is likely to be considered. The topic is also on the Ways and Means Committee agenda for Wednesday afternoon.

County Legislature Chairwoman Mary Pat Hancock said since the legislature has not yet discussed the issue as a group, she couldn't say how Zambito's application will be received, but she said Zambito certainly seems qualified for the job.

"He has the experience," she said. "He's a good attorney and he has experience in insurance and risk management."

She added that his experience as a county legislator also helps.

In talking with Chuck on Monday afternoon, he clearly has an enthusiasm for the job and is hoping that the other legislators will support his application. He isn't applying for the job just because it seems like the thing to do -- he sees it as the right thing for him to do at this point in his career.

"I think I can fit in fairly well," Zambito said. "John’s been there a long time – over 30 years – I don’t know that anybody can just step in and replace him, but I think I can probably do as good a job as anybody with my background."

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