Suozzi, Haber eye September primary

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Haber said that he plans to hold regular town meetings and return to the towns that he visits prior to the election. He said he is comfortable sharing his views, but thinks it would be better in a debate setting, where candidates can engage in a dialogue about their plans.

“Voters deserve to have debates where the candidates answer the questions of the community and the press,” Haber said. “These debates are an opportunity to move beyond scripted 30-second ads and really learn who the candidates are.”

Standing next to a sign on the wall of his Freeport campaign headquarters that read, “Adam Haber: Breaking the wasteful cycle of political hacks bloating the county payroll,” Haber asked, “What is Suozzi trying to hide — patronage, hiking taxes 23 percent, or trying to keep workers from getting paid?” He said he believes Suozzi has been ignorant of the public in the past, specifically when he admitted to taking Nassau County families for granted in 2009. “If Suozzi doesn’t trust his voters,” Haber said, “then what makes us think that his voters can trust him?”

Suozzi acknowledged that he was a bit lax in the last election, and said he would not let that happen again. “This election can be won or lost based upon how hard I work,” he said, “and I promise you I will work so much harder than I did in 2009. You will see me work harder than I ever worked before.”

Addressing his vision for the county, Suozzi said he wants to redevelop about 5 percent of its land, specifically areas around train stations. He said he would like to see more mixed-use developments that cater to young professionals.

“I’ve got a vision for the future of building up our downtowns,” he said. “We have to try and create places where young people can rent an apartment.”

Suozzi said that communities such as Valley Stream, Lynbrook, Freeport, Baldwin and Long Beach are prime for these development opportunities.

In late July, Haber announced his plans to fix the county’s property assessment system by adding staff in the assessment office, ensuring that residential properties are reassessed every three years and commercial properties every year, relying more on sophisticated valuation software and funding tax refunds without borrowing.

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