In a race for the Town of Hempstead’s 6th Councilmatic District, which incorporates East Meadow, Levittown, Plainedge, Salisbury and portions of Bethpage, North Bellmore, North Merrick, Seaford and Wantagh, Republican incumbent of 13 years Gary Hudes faces challenger Diane Madden.
Hudes, of Levittown, has been the president of Gennaro Jewelers, Inc. in Bellmore for 32 years, and Madden, of East Meadow, is an animal rights activist and a co-founder of Hope for Hempstead Shelter.
Q: What are the biggest issues facing the 6th Councilmatic District?
Hudes: We must continue to maintain the highest Wall Street ratings on Long Island and continue to control governmental costs. These savings have resulted in the reduction of Town taxes for the past few years. We continue to provide local services by asking our town employees to do more and, in turn, produce that much more for our residents. The Town of Hempstead receives only approximately 9 percent of property taxes and yet provides the vast majority of local neighborhood services to its residents.
Madden: The biggest issues in the 6th Councilmatic District are taxes. Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray has raised real property taxes 44.9 percent since 2003. Other issues are vacant stores, unemployment, lack of affordable housing and jobs, and disastrous roads.
Q: If reelected, what are your biggest goals and objectives for another term?
Hudes: I have been a tireless worker for our residents, having committed an incredible amount of my time to solving constituents concerns that impact their lives. I have written numerous pieces of legislation to make our quality of life far better in our community. I will continue to be their most responsive representative, personally addressing any issues on a personal level, giving each resident the benefit of my extensive business, community and problem solving experience. I am proud of my record and reputation for great constituent services.
Q: As challenger, what skills can you bring to the position, and what would be your primary goals and objectives for the upcoming term?