Solages sworn in where it all began
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Her district includes areas that were formerly represented by Republican Assemblymen Brian Curran and Edward Ra, who two years ago were new to Albany themselves. Both were in attendance last Friday afternoon, and both wished their new colleague good luck.
Curran said he wanted to work with Solages to ensure that Long Island gets its fair share of state aid for school districts. He said that regional interests always trump party politics.
His advice for Solages was to never forget the people who elected her. “Remember that everything starts and ends with the district you represent,” Curran said.
Ra said he had met with Solages a few times since her election to talk about the portions of the 22nd Assembly District that he has ceded to her, including Elmont, North Valley Stream and part of Franklin Square. He said that as an Assembly member, it is important to get to know the communities well and learn about what is important to constituents. “This job gives you a great opportunity to work on the everyday issues,” he said.
Solages isn’t the first member of her family to be elected to public office. In 2011, her older brother, Carrié, won his first term in the Nassau County Legislature. He spoke at the ceremony, congratulating his sister and encouraging the students in the audience. “With an education, you can accomplish anything,” he said. “The sky is the limit.”
Carrié Solages spoke of how important it was for his sister to host this ceremony at her former elementary school, joined by some of the teachers who helped her accomplish so much. “We are here to recognize the fact that, finally, we have one of our own,” he said. “Someone from our own community representing us in Albany, a person who grew up here in this community and knows our needs, a person who can let the Legislature know, in Albany, what is important to us.”
Principal Walter Aksionoff, who has shepherded Dutch Broadway since Solages’s elementary days, said she contacted the school about hosting the ceremony there, and his answer was an enthusiastic yes. “I always believe that our children should see their own,” Aksionoff said, adding that Michaelle and Carrié are “living proof” that students can accomplish their dreams.