Seeking his fifth term, Republican Edward P. Ra, 37, of Garden City South, has moved up fast in the minority conference. He now holds the No. 3 post in the leadership, and before he took that on, he was the ranking minority member on the education committee.
In both roles, Ra has been a responsive voice for district residents, from raising their concerns about education standards and state testing to fighting for more studies and community input on airport noise.
Working for the district and haggling with Democrats to make their bills better is most of a minority member’s job. But Ra also is promoting a great idea that needs more attention: a nonpartisan state office modeled on the federal Congressional Budget Office that would score the financial impacts of pending legislation.
Democratic challenger Billy Carr, 43, lives in Williston Park. A union electrician and village trustee for six years, Carr is active in the community, coaches youth sports and wants to fight for more state school aid for Long Island. He also wants the state to take action on the skyrocketing rates of the New York American Water Co. But his support for new exemptions to the property-tax cap is unwise, and his knowledge of the state’s governance challenges is limited.
Newsday endorses Ra.