Herald Life chats with Bellmore-Merrick’s county legislators

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Commenting the same night on the loss of his Democratic ally, Tom Suozzi, in the county executive’s race to Republican incumbent Ed Mangano, Denenberg said he is “concerned that the county is moving in the wrong direction in terms of the budget, taxes, our infrastructure, including sewage treatment plants, and sustainability.

“As always, I’ll be the first to work across party lines,” Denenberg said. “The overall negative tenor of this campaign might make that hard for us, but we’ll do it.”

When the Herald Life later asked Denenberg about his priorities in the coming term, he noted the importance of budget, tax and sustainability issues, which he sees as intertwined. But he described his number one priority as Hurricane Sandy recovery.

“Getting people back to their homes and businesses, and helping them receive the insurance payments they are entitled to, and relief from NY Rising’s distribution of federal grant money promised after the president’s appropriation passed Congress in February,” Denenberg said.

Noting that much Sandy street flooding came from storm drains, Denenberg said he also wants to advocate for “municipal grants from NY Rising being used to mitigate against future storms through installation of backflow devices with gate valves and constant pressure.” He also said that “street elevation, seawalls and other proper storm control measures” are needed to protect Nassau’s towns and villages.

Lastly, Denenberg noted the bills he sponsored last session requiring banks and insurers to promptly process Sandy-related payments to homeowners or face penalties. The bills received the support of the Legislature’s entire Democratic minority and the opposition of its entire Republican majority. Gonsalves, the Legislature’s presiding officer, did not call the bills for a vote, according to Denenberg.

“The leadership can promote bipartisanship by calling bills on both sides,” he said. “Under Judy Jacobs, Republicans could make motions. Now Democrats can’t make motions. This is not satisfactory.”

Laura Curran

Curran told the Herald Life that she hopes to emulate Denenberg’s record of constituent service.

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