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Todd Kaminsky to represent New York’s 9th Senate District

Todd D. Kaminsky of Long Beach, Democratic incumbent

Todd D. Kaminsky of Long Beach, Democratic incumbent candidate for the 9th Senate District. Credit: James Escher

Todd D. Kaminsky has become an important and respected voice for Long Island and his district.

His constant attention to the region’s transportation needs, particularly pushing for the reconstruction of the Nassau Expressway and demanding better Long Island Rail Road service, is essential. The former federal prosecutor brings his training to lawmaking, demanding facts to support policy changes and insisting on a proper process.

Winning a 2016 special election after Dean Skelos was convicted on corruption charges, Kaminsky advocated for a law that would take away public pensions from elected officials who betray the public trust. He continues to fight for ethics reforms, including the need for term limits and a ban on outside income for legislators. He is now adding to his agenda the reform of industrial development agencies that throw around tax breaks without any accountability.

What’s more, Kaminsky, 40, of Long Beach, has a thoughtful, not reflexive, view on controversial issues, including development at Belmont Park, which he recognizes as important to his district even as he tries to address community concerns, and the legalization of marijuana and sports betting. Noting that both are likely to happen, Kaminsky focuses on how the state can ensure that the best safeguards are in place.

Francis X. Becker Jr., a Lynbrook Republican, spent two decades in the Nassau County legislature. A financial planner, Becker said state decision-making after superstorm Sandy required only some homes to be raised, creating ugly streetscapes. Becker, 65, focuses on hot issues like LIRR service and the county’s fiscal mess, but he’s too limited in his thinking on other topics, from ethics, on which he argues no one can legislate better behavior, to the Belmont Park development, which he opposes as “way too large” without articulating what he’d like to see.

Newsday endorses Kaminsky. — The editorial board