Political issues are ever evolving in Nassau County on all levels of government.
Here is a list of hot topics I hope to see addressed in the coming months:
Tax Reform – President Donald Trump thinks it’s a good idea to give corporations and the wealthy, large tax cuts at the expense of New York State residents.
He plans on doing this in part by eliminating the deductibility of state and local taxes from federal income tax, which would negatively impact New Yorkers.
According to a recent Newsday non-partisan opinion letter co-authored by Congressmen Tom Suozzi and Peter King, New York already sends $48 billion more to the federal government than it gets back (more than any other state).
The Long Island Association, our communities’ largest business group, believes this could cost Long Island taxpayers up to $2.5 billion a year. If this tax break goes through it would devastate the region’s economy and crush the middle class. Summing it up, it will kill the goose (New York) that laid the golden egg.
Gun Control – Expect a proposal from the New York State Legislature, banning the sale of assault weapons and semi-automatic rifles, to be a hot topic.
The recent mass murder in Las Vegas has made this an issue that needs to be addressed early on during the 2018 New York State legislative session. It’s unfortunate that it took a tragedy of historical proportion to make gun safety and the wellbeing of residents a top priority.
Corruption – This is an issue that won’t go away. And it must be polling well, because the current Nassau County Executive race has both candidates, Democrat Laura Curran and Republican Jack Martins, making corruption a primary issue.
Curran has wisely called the cost of corrupt politicians a “corruption tax” imposed on residents.
Nassau County needs an independent Inspector General to oversee the contracting process. The New York State legislature needs to address corruption through ethics reform legislation in areas such as term limits, closing the LLC donation loophole and the corrupting influence of outside income.
With former state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos recently getting his corruption conviction overturned, corruption may finally get the attention it deserves during the 2018 state Legislative session.
The New York State Constitutional Convention – Every 20 years, the New York State Constitution requires voters to decide if a Constitutional Convention should be held to consider amendments to the State Constitution. This proposal will be part of the Nov. 7 election day ballot.
Those that are in support of a Constitutional Convention want campaign finance and ethics reform, fair redistricting and term limits.
Those against are concerned about losing collective bargaining rights, pension reform and the high cost of a Constitutional Convention.
The vote for a NYS Constitutional Convention (otherwise known as “Con-Con”) was first on the ballot in 1777 and this is the 13th time state residents are voting on this issue.
The Environment – Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency has rolled back many of the Obama administration’s environmental initiatives.
He believes that global warming is a hoax, and he’s responsible for pulling the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement.
California has led the way on a healthier and more carbon free environment. Let’s hope during the 2018 Legislative Session New York State fights back against the gutting of Environmental Laws by the EPA by following California’s example.
Health Care Reform – President Trump’s several misguided attempts to repeal and replace Obamacare have failed. He now has two choices: change healthcare through executive order; or, work with the Democrats to come up with a new health care system. For the safety and welfare of American citizens, I hope he chooses the latter.
North Korea – President Trump’s practice of antagonizing North Korea’s dictator, Kim Jung-un, with wild threats and childish name-calling, puts all American’s safety at risk. When a world leader makes any decision they need to always consider the worst possible outcome. The end of civilization in a nuclear holocaust shouldn’t be one possible scenario.