Rick Brand Portrait of Newsday reporter Rick Brand taken on

Rick Brand is a longtime Newsday reporter who writes about politics and government on Long Island.

Come Tuesday, Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy officially turns Republican.

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Levy filed papers to switch from Democrat last spring during his failed bid for the GOP gubernatorial nod. His registration form went into a lock box at the Suffolk Board of Elections. Officials say the box will be opened Tuesday and voter rolls will list Levy as Republican.

Suffolk GOP chairman John Jay LaVallesaid he'll be celebrating while on vacation. "It's just too bad he didn't change [an election] cycle earlier," he mused. Had he done so before October 2009, he could have made the statewide primary ballot with 25 percent of the June convention vote, rather than needing 50 percent as a nonparty member.