TODAY'S PAPER
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Opinion

Peas in a pod

Good afternoon. Today’s points:

  • Flanagan’s bad report card from teacher union
  • Nassau hopes third time’s a charm
  • Is Trump to the U.S. what Berlusconi was to Italy?

Daily Point

Not the apple of the teachers’ eyes

State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan told the editorial board Thursday that not only did he speak before the political action committee of the New York State United Teachers on Wednesday, he took questions from its members for an hour and 45 minutes.

Yet Flanagan did not score an endorsement, primarily because he supports using test scores to evaluate teachers. The group did give its nod, however, to three incumbent members of Flanagan’s Republican delegation, Kenneth LaValle, Tom Croci and Phil Boyle, while also supporting Democrats Adam Haber, who is running for the seat vacated by Jack Martins, and Todd Kaminsky, who won a special election in April.

The best Flanagan can hope for is that the union’s campaign war chest, which helped elect Kaminsky, might spend just a million or two less this fall after Flanagan’s outreach.

Rita Ciolli

Talking Point

If at first Nassau doesn’t succeed ...

The third time may be the charm in Nassau County’s attempts to ink a deal with a financial adviser to evaluate leasing the county’s sewer system to an investor, thanks to a new plan on structuring the contract.

Officials with the Nassau Interim Finance Authority and the county say the proposed contract will probably be split in two. The proposed contract would pay KPMG to evaluate the idea of an investor giving Nassau as much as $1 billion in return for decades of sewer fees, and it could incentivize KPMG to support the deal by paying bonuses at closing.

At this point, the county legislature and NIFA will likely only be asked to approve the part of the deal that would pay KPMG just under $200,000 to evaluate the idea and, if it moves forward, another $700,000 to draft a request for proposals from potential investors and to review the responses. The contract for helping close the deal would be revisited later.

There is still plenty of opposition among county and NIFA officials to leasing the sewer system, both because some consider it backdoor borrowing, and because a recent evaluation of the sewer system takeover by a private operator showed it hasn’t produced much of the promised financial savings. Still, insiders say this approach will likely be approved by both bodies.

Lane Filler

Point of Intersection

Berlusconi, Trump are two of a kind

Arrogant, provocative, media-centric, Vladimir Putin-loving and capable of talking to the “belly” of his electorate.

The similarities between former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump have given me a sense of deja vu. Here’s why.

Roberto Capocelli

Pencil Point

Countdown

Columns