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Robert Calarco for Suffolk Legislative District 7

Robert Calarco, Democratic incumbent candidate for Suffolk Legislature

Robert Calarco, Democratic incumbent candidate for Suffolk Legislature District 7 Credit: James Escher

Robert T. Calarco has emerged as a leader with a solid record since his first election to the seat a decade ago.

Seeking a sixth and final term, Calarco, 42, of Patchogue, says his top district priority is the sewer project to connect 500 homes in south Patchogue. He vows to assist the county's effort to acquire and preserve part of the Avery Homestead in partnership with Brookhaven Town and continue striving to improve housing and public safety in Gordon Heights.

As presiding officer in the Democratic majority, Calarco is committed to following through on plans for police procedural reforms and fair redistricting, and making certain that opioid settlement funds are used, as intended, to fight addiction.

Republican Dominick S. Thorne, 54, of Patchogue, shows a devotion to policing and local emergency services, with which he's a longtime volunteer. But he lacks the incumbent's versatility on government issues.

Newsday endorses Calarco.

Suffolk Legislative District 7 covers Patchogue, Medford, Gordon Heights,Middle Island, Fire Island

ENDORSEMENTS ARE DETERMINED solely by the Newsday editorial board, a team of opinion journalists focused on issues of public policy and governance. Newsday’s news division has no role in this process.