Some thoughts on the State of the County speech Monday night by Nassau County Executive Eward Mangano. For Newsday's story, see here.
High marks for special effects.
The room at the Morelly Homeland Security Center in Bethpage had an institutional feel. It looked like a conference room at a so-so hotel, but four screens behind Mangano — two on either side — had snappy graphics that illustrated the speech. One of the many slides showed the N16 LI Bus, with an ad on the front for Briarcliffe College, where Mangano once worked.
Middling marks for delivery
Mangano is not a gifted public speaker, and at 55 minutes the speech was long. Several people in the audience could be seen working their blackberrys halfway through.
He relied way too heavily on the prompter screen to his right, reading from the left one much less often, and looking straight at the live-TV camera only occasionally.
No grade on content.
With only 74 days in office, Mangano has yet to make his mark. He has cut almost $50 million from the $2.6 billion annual budget, but that was no sooner done than he announced he would spend an additional $7 million to upgrade 911 after the emergency call center was overwhelmed during the weekend storm.
Odd couple at the event: Herberth Flores, a Mangano deputy commissioner with a felony conviction from 2005, wound up sitting next to the county sheriff, Michael Sposato, who said after the speech that he did not know Flores and met him for the first time at the speech.