When Kara Hahn first ran for this seat in 2011, Newsday said she was "sensible, articulate and knows the issues." After two terms, that's still true. Hahn has focused on environmental and social issues, including water quality, land preservation, domestic violence protections, and drug treatment programs. She's passionate, committed and engaged -- and she's gotten things done.

Hahn, 44, of Setauket, supports County Executive Steve Bellone's budget and economic development plans, but admits the county is "overly reliant" on sales tax revenues.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Hahn's opponent, Donna Cumella of Port Jefferson Station, was the whistleblower on former information technology commissioner Donald Rodgers. Despite a background in finance and computer systems, Cumella, 54, lacks new ideas, and an understanding of key issues.

Hahn has a good grasp on the county's needs, understands teamwork and has the potential for a leadership role one day. If everyone had her passion, the county would benefit.

Newsday endorses Hahn.