As the Trump administration’s first 100 days draw to a close, it becomes clear that several issues of particular importance on Long Island and New York City will be carried over and widely followed over the subsequent 100.
Here are five:
MS-13: President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have talked of late about the horrid slayings in Suffolk County for which the notorious transnational gang known as MS-13 or Mara Salvatrucha is believed responsible.
The group is suspected of 15 homicides in the county in 16 months, with eight victims known to be high school students.
A targeted crackdown would mesh with the administration’s rhetoric. Trump made it a campaign centerpiece that he’d eject and keep out those here illegally and reduce crime.
Health care: Not only are people eager to see how and when the White House and Congress repeal and replace Obamacare, hospitals await word on how they’ll operate financially.
Roads and bridges: Trump has let it be known since January that he’d create a council headed by two developers to coordinate massive undertakings on infrastructure worth $1 trillion. After release of his first fiscal plan last month, Beth Osborne, a senior policy adviser for Transportation for America, a nonpartisan group that urges transportation investment, said: “For someone who says he wants to invest in infrastructure, I don’t see any evidence of it in this budget.”
Opioid addiction: Top Trump advisers said last week that he’s determined to increase access to addiction treatment. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price called for “cutting-edge research” on new treatment, and improved pain-management practices to reduce prescription abuse.
Price announced the release of $485 million in grants to fund “evidence-based treatment,” although that stemmed from a law enacted last year. Here, too, proposed spending cuts have become a concern in public discussions of the problem.
Taxes: On Feb. 9, Trump said: “We’re going to be announcing something, I would say, over the next two or three weeks that will be phenomenal in terms of tax.” On Friday, he told The Associated Press that businesses and individuals will receive a “massive tax cut” under a tax reform package he plans to unveil next week.
Recently, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told the Financial Times that the prospect of getting a reform bill to Trump’s desk within the administration’s first 200 days ranges from “highly aggressive to not realistic.”
Regional taxpayers will want to see if state and local deductions on federal returns will be eliminated, whether charitable donation breaks will be affected, and how a new “border tax” might affect consumers.