Rick Lazio, candidate for governor, returned Wednesday to the old Suffolk terrain, including a lunchtime meeting with scores of employees at Napco Security Technologies’ plant on Bayview Avenue in Amityville, who warmly applauded his stump speech, which was mostly focused on the state economy and government reform. Later in the day Lazio opened his headquarters on East Main Street in Bay Shore and was due to meet with a local group.
“The name of the game... is jobs, jobs, jobs,” he said. “The way to get there: Lower taxes, more responsive government, more accountablity, better decisions....It’s a two way street: We make it more competitive, we help create a more healthy atmosphere for businesses to thrive — because we want them to create jobs.” He stressed the outflow of younger people from Long Island due to economic pressures. He vowed to return after his election and hopes to see Napco hire twice as many employees.
Of the Albany status quo, he said: “We’ve seen the worst run of ethical violations... in my lifetime.” He mentioned Eliot Spitzer and Alan Hevesi by name, and referred to Hiram Monserrate and Pedro Espada without name. “It’s a disgrace,” he said. “We should not be known as the corruption capital of America. We should be known as an honest, progressive state that rewards savings and work and family and investment. That’s what we ought to be known as.”
Supporter Richard Soloway, the founder and chairman of the combined Napco companies, who introduced Lazio to the staff, said he knew Lazio from his first Congressional run in 1992 and called the longtime Brightwaters resident a “straight shooter.” “He’ll be able to sort out a lot of the problems,” said Soloway, accompanied by his wife Donna, also a Lazio backer.
Soloway said: “The issue here we have is people moving out the state. We have great employees but they can’t afford to live in New York with the property taxes, electricity, it’s very expensive to live. You drive down Southern State Parkway, you see sheets, all over the parkway, that say ‘I love New York but I’m moving to Florida, I can’t afford to pay this any more.’ Rick understands all of this and with his drive, background, legislative skills and legal skills, he’s going to be able to sort a lot of this out.”