Joseph J. Seymour Elected Chairman of N.Y. Power Authority; Brings Extensive Experience In State Government

Michael Saltzman                        
(914) 390-8181

July 26, 2005


MASSENA—Joseph J. Seymour, a long-time trustee of the New York Power Authority (NYPA), has been elected chairman of the New York State-owned public power utility.

The election by the Power Authority’s trustees followed the resignation last month of Louis P. Ciminelli as chairman and as a NYPA trustee and Gov. George E. Pataki’s appointment of Elise M. Cusack, an Erie County legislator, to fill the board vacancy left by Ciminelli’s departure.

Governor Pataki has also named NYPA Trustee Frank S. McCullough, Jr., as chairman of the New York State Economic Development Power Allocation Board (EDPAB), replacing Ciminelli in that role. EDPAB reviews applications and makes recommendations for allocations of lower-cost electricity for two major job-producing power programs that NYPA administers.

Ciminelli, who had served on the NYPA board since 1995 and as chairman since 2002, notified Governor Pataki earlier this year of his intention to leave the Power Authority to devote full attention to his Western New York construction company, LPCiminelli Inc.

Seymour, like Ciminelli, will serve as NYPA’s chairman, with Eugene W. Zeltmann continuing in the position of president and chief executive officer.

Last month, the State Senate confirmed the Governor’s reappointment of Seymour to a new five-year term, to May 2010, as a Power Authority trustee.

The Senate also approved the appointment of Cusack to a term extending to May 2009.

Seymour, a resident of the Town of Bethlehem in Albany County, previously served as the Power Authority’s chairman and chief executive officer from February 2001 to January 2002, before Governor Pataki named him executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. He served until October 2004 in that capacity, and has remained a trustee of the Power Authority.

During his earlier tenure as chairman, the Power Authority completed the rapid installation and start-up of six small clean power plants in New York City and one on Long Island in time to avert threatened power shortages in the summer of 2001.

As executive director of the Port Authority, Seymour led the bistate agency during the critical period after Sept. 11 as the rebuilding of lower Manhattan took shape. This included restoration of PATH service to Exchange Place and the World Trade Center, the development of the World Trade Center Master Plan and Site Plan, and work on the new Downtown Transit Hub.

The Governor credited him for doing an “extraordinary job…in managing the rebuilding efforts and helping New York come back stronger than ever.”

Prior to his earlier experience as NYPA chairman, Seymour served four and a half years as commissioner of the New York State Office of General Services, and before that, as executive deputy commissioner of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles.

He also has considerable local government experience, in various leading managerial capacities in the cities of Rochester, Yonkers and Peekskill.

Seymour holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Northeastern University and a master’s in community planning and development from the University of Rhode Island.

The New York Power Authority owns and operates 17 power plants, including the St. Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt Project here, and more than 1,400 circuit miles of high-voltage transmission lines.