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Former Legislator Burton Waiting for Next Job

OSSINING, N.Y. – A retirement brunch for former county legislator William Burton is planned for Sunday at the Atria senior living community in Ossining, but Burton said he is not really retiring, just switching jobs.

"I'm in no position to physically retire. I'm only 68 and it's at the point where unless your investments did really well or stayed really well you have to keep on working. I like what I do, I like working," Burton said.

Burton said he did not want to disclose the jobs he has applied for because he is "afraid it would jynx it." He said the job would be a full-time "job job" somewhere in Westchester or New York City.

Asked if he would miss working for the county legislature, Burton said he would miss the regularity of going into work and being with the people that he worked with, but he would not miss working with County Executive Robert Astorino.

"It's gotten to be such a politicized and polarized world between the legislature and the county executive. It's not as creative as it used to be," Burton said.

Though Burton and Astorino have their differences, the differences are not the reason that Burton retired. Burton said he retired because his arthritic left knee made it painful for him to walk.

"My knee was killing me. I felt that I couldn't run for office, I'd be gimping for office," Burton said.

To help reduce the pain in his knee and to improve his general health, Burton went on a diet and underwent weight loss surgery last year. Within about seven months, he went from weighing 317 pounds to weighing 219 pounds. His goal is to weigh less than 200 pounds.

"I'm really glad I did it. My waist is smaller, my neck is smaller, everything is smaller," Burton said. "By taking off the weight, the feeling in my knee has improved dramatically. It's nothing like what it was."

State Assemblywoman Sandy Galef said she would miss working with Burton.

"I think it's a little sad to see Bill retiring. He's given so much to the community, to the town of Ossining," Galef said.

In Ossining, Burton dedicated a lot of time to helping businesses on North State Road with lighting, sewers and county issues, Galef said. Burton lives on Sherwood Avenue in Ossining.

Burton worked as county legislator for District 9 covering Ossining, Briarcliff, Croton and Cortlandt from 2005 to 2011. Before becoming county legislator, Burton was the Town of Ossining Supervisor from 1991 to 1997. Burton also worked with the county Taxi and Limousine Commission from 1998 to 1999, and he founded a community and government relations consulting firm, Burton & Company LLC.

Burton's retirement brunch is planned for Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon at the Atria senior living community at 321 North Highland Ave. in Ossining. The brunch is open to the public with a contribution of $50 per person. The majority of the proceeds will be donated to the Ossining Volunteer Ambulance Corp. which Burton volunteered for in the past as an ambulance driver.

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