The Long Beach City Council has endorsed Nassau County Legislator Laura Curran (D-Baldwin) in her bid for county executive, saying that she would root out corruption and fix the county’s finances.
The five-member council — Len Torres, Anthony Eramo, Scott Mandel, Anissa Moore and Chumi Diamond, all Democrats — announced Thursday that it was backing Curran, with Torres saying that she’s an independent-minded candidate who would end the “corrupt pay-to-play style of governance that has plagued Nassau County,” referring to last year’s arrest of County Executive Ed Mangano on bribery charges.
“Laura is in this race for the right reasons,” Torres, the council’s president, said in a statement. “Nassau residents are ready for new leadership and a fresh vision to move our county forward.”
Curran announced her campaign last November. In the wake of several corruption scandals involving Long Island elected officials, Curran was endorsed by county Democrats in January, the first woman to be nominated for the position by a major party. She stood alongside Long Beach City Manager Jack Schnirman, who is running for county comptroller, at a news conference that month, where both pledged to root out graft and fix the county’s finances.
Both officially received the Democratic Party’s nomination at its convention at the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City on May 31.
According to Newsday, Curran told a crowd of roughly 400 Democrats that she had a solution to wipe out county patronage, repair its much-maligned contracting system, and fix the way property taxes are assessed.
"I am proud to endorse Laura Curran to be our next county executive,” City Councilman Scott Mandel, who is seeking re-election this year, said in a statement. “Laura has the vision it’s going to take to put Nassau County back in the 21st Century. Having seen Long Beach through the recovery from [Hurricane] Sandy, I know that Laura is exactly the type of county executive we, at the local level, need. She’ll put forward innovative plans to rebuild our county in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way and I’m proud to stand with her today.”
Curran has also been endorsed by U.S. Reps. Kathleen Rice and Tom Suozzi; the Nassau County Democratic Committee and its chairman, Jay Jacobs; State Sens. Todd Kaminsky and John Brooks; county Legislators Arnie Drucker and Delia DeRiggi-Whitton; and Assemblyman Chuck Lavine, Curran’s former primary opponent.
Curran also has the backing of the Working Families Party, EMILY’s List, Eleanor’s Legacy, and 11 local unions.
“I am truly honored and grateful to have the support of the Long Beach City Council,” Curran said in a statement. “They have integrity and work tirelessly everyday for the people of Long Beach. Whether it’s protecting our beautiful coastline or building back from Superstorm Sandy, they stand up for the people they represent. That’s what I will do as county executive, because the people of Nassau deserve a county government that works for them.”
Curran added that taxpayers are tired of a “county government that has maintained a crooked status quo that costs our residents millions of dollars in wasted taxes to uphold a corrupt patronage and country contracting system.”
County Comptroller George Maragos, who changed his party affiliation from Republican to Democrat last year, is challenging Curran in a September primary. He could not immediately be reached for comment. Former state Sen. Jack Martins, meanwhile, was nominated by Nassau Republicans to run for the seat.
Eramo said that Curran would “fight everyday for the hard-working men and women of Nassau County,” while Diamond said that Curran would “restore Long Beach's faith in our county government, and she is the only candidate who can fix the mess in Nassau County.”
“Laura understands the importance of quality and affordable housing to help retain our young people, attract businesses, and grow our economy,” Moore said in a statement. “She has the vision we need to turn Nassau County around, and as county executive, I know Laura will be on the forefront of clean government and economic development.”