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Monday, September 1, 2014

This election is too important for you to sit at home

This is the last time many of you will hear from me before you vote on Election Day.

I’ve made it clear who my choice will be for county executive: Ed Mangano.

Apathy will lead many of you to stay home (or stay at work) on Tuesday. I urge you to take this election seriously. A year ago, Nassau County was faced with the unthinkable, but with great challenges came tremendous opportunity. Now, a year after Hurricane Sandy, we are better and stronger. The county is recovering, and making tremendous progress.

Thanks to the resilience of the people of Long Island, iconic landmarks such as the Long Beach boardwalk are rebuilt and thriving. We owe much of this progress to our government officials, particularly Mangano.

Over the weekend, Governor Cuomo endorsed Mangano’s challenger, former County Executive Tom Suozzi. That wasn’t surprising, given that they share a party affiliation. But politics demanded that Cuomo endorse Suozzi. After watching a commercial for Mangano in which the governor touted Mangano’s record on holding the line on taxes and the property tax cap, I wondered: If the choice were personal and not political, who would Cuomo choose?

This wasn’t the first time he has spoken openly of his respect for Mangano. He has repeatedly endorsed his leadership, citing his dedication and focus. The governor thought so highly of the job Mangano has been doing to consolidate county government and save taxpayers money that he awarded the county $5 million. Mangano was commended for his cost-cutting initiatives, in particular for converting two of eight police precincts into community policing centers. This consolidation moved more police officers to patrol status, cut more than 100 jobs, and will save taxpayers $20 million a year.

Hurricane Sandy caused $68 billion in damage and claimed the lives of 200 people. In its aftermath, Cuomo and Mangano worked hand in hand, and time and time again, the governor praised Mangano for his leadership throughout the recovery process. In his 2013 State of the State address, Cuomo mentioned Mangano as both men continued to promise the public that they would put party differences aside and work together on behalf of the people.

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