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Letter: Senior citizens need action to cut medication prices


President Donald Trump has promised to cut prescription drug prices significantly. I want to give him a few reasons to pursue this cause seriously with Congress.

Seniors need action. Research shows that the median income for seniors on Medicare part D was $26,000 a year in 2016. And seniors on part D had 4.5 prescriptions a month on average in 2017. In addition, we have seen prices for brand-name drugs rise dramatically. In 2006, the average annual cost of a brand-name drug was $1,864, but in 2017 it was $6,798, according to AARP and the University of Minnesota.

Senior citizens sometimes have to choose whether to buy food or medications. This is unacceptable. Pharmaceutical companies should be made to justify the prices of their drugs to government regulators.

We need Congress to pass legislation to limit consumers’ out-of-pocket costs, prohibit drugmakers from paying to delay the availability of less-expensive generic drugs, and allow Medicare to negotiate lower prices [“Pelosi’s Medicare plan,” News, Sept. 20].

Syed Hussain,


Editor’s note: The writer is lead volunteer for a Babylon group that advocates on issues on behalf of AARP.


Apartment building will hurt Copiague

The Sept. 5 news story ”Two new buildings planned for Oak St.” neglected to consider the community’s perspective on plans for a three-story building with 11 apartments at Oak and Lafayette Streets in Copiague.

The owner of an old house now used for a tax practice is seeking a zone change for the building, which would have an office on the first floor and one- and two-bedroom apartments above.

Your story quoted only Babylon Supervisor Rich Schaffer. I believe that by bringing in apartments, the town is making it harder for lower-middle-class families to enjoy the suburban lifestyle. On Lafayette Street, where I reside, families sacrifice and work more than two jobs so that they can pay high property taxes to live in a suburb that is quiet and where their children can ride their bikes safely in the street.

The apartment building will add cars and people to an already congested neighborhood. I am not persuaded that this will add to our quality of life.

Marion Mertz,


Station will disrupt Bellerose Terrace

I am a resident of Bellerose Terrace who lives on Superior Road, near the site of the new Elmont train station [“Elmont LIRR station to be done in ’22,” News, Aug. 25].

I received no official advance notice that the station was being planned, and residents were given only two weeks to write letters with our concerns before the station was approved by Empire State Development.

Our community is small and has no main thoroughfare. To have a station built in Bellerose Terrace, close to our homes, will subject our peaceful community to trains stopping and going regularly, as well as to strangers, taxis, Ubers, and possibly drunk and rowdy fans, and to drivers looking to park on our small streets, which are already congested with neighborhood cars.

Our community is being disrupted by the wants of politicians and corporations. Never was the quality of life for Bellerose Terrace residents taken into consideration!

I guess a for-sale sign will be going up at our house.

Kathryn Grego,

Bellerose Terrace


Greens: State should end fusion voting

The issue of fusion voting elicits very different opinions from apparently identically situated entities — the minority political parties of New York State [“Public finance reform hearing,” News, Sept. 11].

The small parties insert their issues into the political mainstream. Some view fusion as a legitimate part of that process. The Green Party of New York does not.

Most of New York’s small parties do not run their own candidates. They endorse a major political party candidate, trading their endorsement for that candidate’s support on their issues.

The Green Party does run its own candidates, never endorsing Democrats nor Republicans. We draw attention to our issues by showing that Green candidates can draw votes, giving major parties reason to compete by supporting our issues.

Voters assume that when they see a person listed as the Green Party candidate for office, that person espouses Green Party values. But major party candidates need not run as Greens to appear on the ballot as Green Party nominees, because the party’s consent isn’t necessary. New York’s opportunity-to-ballot petition process allows other parties to dishonestly co-opt our ballot line. The major parties perform taxidermy on the Green Party, killing its political free will and presenting a dead, stuffed specimen to the voting public.

Fusion voting lies to the public.

Allan Hunter,

North Hempstead

Editor’s note: The writer is treasurer of the Green Party of Nassau County.