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Long IslandNassau

Special election in Nassau’s 16th legislative district

Nassau Community College Trustee Arnold Drucker, a Democrat, on Tuesday faces Republican Louis Imbroto, an attorney at Nassau University Medical Center, in a special election to fill the seat of the late county Legis. Judith Jacobs.

While Democrats have a significant advantage in the 16th District among registered voters, Republicans are making a push for the seat, which would give them a supermajority in the county legislature. Currently, the GOP holds a 12-6 majority.

The winner will serve the remainder of Jacobs’ term, through 2017, and will need to run for re-election next fall for a full two-year term. Jacobs, who had represented the district since the legislature’s creation in 1996, died Sept. 13 at age 77.

Drucker, 59, of Plainview, is an attorney making his first run for office. He was appointed to NCC’s board in 2013 by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and was a co-chair of the college’s presidential search committee. Drucker said he would step down from the board if he wins the legislative seat.

Imbroto, 32, of Plainview, has worked in the legal department of NUMC, where the GOP controls appointed positions, since June. He previously worked as an assistant town attorney in the Town of Oyster Bay. Imbroto ran unsuccessfully against Jacobs in 2013 and lost to Assemb. Charles Lavine (D-Glen Cove) in 2012 and 2014.

During the five-week campaign, Drucker has focused on ethics and government reform. He cites the arrests last month of County Executive Edward Mangano, his wife, Linda, and Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on federal corruption charges in connection to their dealings with a Bethpage restaurateur. Each has pleaded not guilty.

“I am hellbent on getting on the legislature to rid this county of corruption, which has gotten out of hand,” said Drucker. “It is eroding the public’s confidence in elected officials.”

Drucker supports legislative Democrats who blocked millions of dollars in capital borrowing because Republicans have refused to create an independent inspector general to oversee county contracts. Imbroto, however, said “it’s inappropriate to block borrowing for political purposes.”

Legislative Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves (R-East Meadow) said Nassau’s commissioner of investigations already oversees county contracts.

Imbroto’s priorities include holding down property taxes and boosting funding to fight heroin abuse.

Both candidates are critical of Mangano’s proposed “public safety fee” of $105 on traffic and parking tickets.

Drucker said county lawmakers should reject the surcharge, along with dozens of other business licensing fee increases.

“Mangano is not raising taxes but he’s killing the middle class with fees,” Drucker said.

Imbroto said the public safety fee should be reduced. He would replace the estimated new annual revenues from the fee by going “line-by-line” through the budget to eliminate unnecessary spending.

The legislature on Monday approved Mangano’s $2.98 billion budget for 2017 budget but delayed a decision on the public safety fee, projected to generate $64 million to pay for the hiring of 150 new police officers and 81 civilian law enforcement employees, and $13 million in new and increased business license fees. Gonsalves says the GOP is considering alternatives to replace the fee revenue in the coming weeks.

The 16th District has 23,017 Democrats, 14,445 Republicans and 13,327 voters unaffiliated with a major party, according to the State Board of Elections.

Nassau Democratic Party Chairman Jay Jacobs said voter registration gives Drucker an advantage.

“I am very confident Arnold Drucker will be elected,” Jacobs said. “He is a strong advocate for the community and is very well liked in the district.”

Nassau GOP Chairman Joseph Mondello said “while this is a tough district for a Republican, Lou Imbroto is a fine, likable and intelligent candidate that is working hard in getting his message out to voters. In a presidential election year anything can happen.”

Nassau Community College Trustee Arnold Drucker, a Democrat, on Tuesday faces Republican Louis Imbroto, an attorney at Nassau University Medical Center, in a special election to fill the seat of the late county Legis. Judith Jacobs.

While Democrats have a significant advantage in the 16th District among registered voters, Republicans are making a push for the seat, which would give them a supermajority in the county legislature. Currently, the GOP holds a 12-6 majority.

The winner will serve the remainder of Jacobs’ term, through 2017, and will need to run for re-election next fall for a full two-year term. Jacobs, who had represented the district since the legislature’s creation in 1996, died Sept. 13 at age 77.

Drucker, 59, of Plainview, is an attorney making his first run for office. He was appointed to NCC’s board in 2013 by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and was a co-chair of the college’s presidential search committee. Drucker said he would step down from the board if he wins the legislative seat.

Imbroto, 32, of Plainview, has worked in the legal department of NUMC, where the GOP controls appointed positions, since June. He previously worked as an assistant town attorney in the Town of Oyster Bay. Imbroto ran unsuccessfully against Jacobs in 2013 and lost to Assemb. Charles Lavine (D-Glen Cove) in 2012 and 2014.

During the five-week campaign, Drucker has focused on ethics and government reform. He cites the arrests last month of County Executive Edward Mangano, his wife, Linda, and Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on federal corruption charges in connection to their dealings with a Bethpage restaurateur. Each has pleaded not guilty.

“I am hellbent on getting on the legislature to rid this county of corruption, which has gotten out of hand,” said Drucker. “It is eroding the public’s confidence in elected officials.”

Drucker supports legislative Democrats who blocked millions of dollars in capital borrowing because Republicans have refused to create an independent inspector general to oversee county contracts. Imbroto, however, said “it’s inappropriate to block borrowing for political purposes.”

Legislative Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves (R-East Meadow) said Nassau’s commissioner of investigations already oversees county contracts.

Imbroto’s priorities include holding down property taxes and boosting funding to fight heroin abuse.

Both candidates are critical of Mangano’s proposed “public safety fee” of $105 on traffic and parking tickets.

Drucker said county lawmakers should reject the surcharge, along with dozens of other business licensing fee increases.

“Mangano is not raising taxes but he’s killing the middle class with fees,” Drucker said.

Imbroto said the public safety fee should be reduced. He would replace the estimated new annual revenues from the fee by going “line-by-line” through the budget to eliminate unnecessary spending.

The legislature on Monday approved Mangano’s $2.98 billion budget for 2017 budget but delayed a decision on the public safety fee, projected to generate $64 million to pay for the hiring of 150 new police officers and 81 civilian law enforcement employees, and $13 million in new and increased business license fees. Gonsalves says the GOP is considering alternatives to replace the fee revenue in the coming weeks.

The 16th District has 23,017 Democrats, 14,445 Republicans and 13,327 voters unaffiliated with a major party, according to the State Board of Elections.

Nassau Democratic Party Chairman Jay Jacobs said voter registration gives Drucker an advantage.

“I am very confident Arnold Drucker will be elected,” Jacobs said. “He is a strong advocate for the community and is very well liked in the district.”

Nassau GOP Chairman Joseph Mondello said “while this is a tough district for a Republican, Lou Imbroto is a fine, likable and intelligent candidate that is working hard in getting his message out to voters. In a presidential election year anything can happen.”

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