Daniel Ross the Democratic hopeful for the 7th Senate District introduced himself to residents and business owners in the Elmont community on Friday, August 24th 2012. His introduction began with a community meeting at local Elmont barbershop “The Shop” on Hempstead Turnpike. The meeting involved several local community leaders including Muzzio Tallini, owner of Signature; Patrick Nicolosi, President of East End Civic Association and member of the Elmont Library Board; Iraq war veteran and owner of the “The Shop”, Carl Achille and others. The aim of the discussion was to air the plethora of issues that are a cause for worry in the Elmont community including economic development, education, affordable housing and the brain drain.
The meeting, a sort of barbershop round table, on how the community would address some of these issues focused on what’s to be done about long term sustainable investment in Elmont. The importance of increasing participation in the Invest in Elmont Program was one issue seemed to pique the interests of those present.
“The “Invest in Elmont” program would be a chance for Elmont’s youth to gain practical educational opportunities and spur entrepreneurial ambitions. In the long term, Invest in Elmont would help spur economic development” said Tallini.
It was clear that Economic Development would be a focal point if he becomes the 7th Senatorial Distinct representative in Albany. Ross also stated that lowering the cost of housing on Long Island would go a long way in preventing suburban youth from leaving the communities that invested in their primary school education. “It would help attract jobs and investments to the area” said Ross.
After the community meeting Daniel Ross met with several local small business owners along Hempstead Turnpike. He later made a stopover at the “Stop 20 Diner” where he introduced himself and conversed with local community residents as they dined.
Ross said he had reservation about the development of a casino at Belmont Park. "Casinos have marginal economic impact on the surrounding communities" said Ross.
He proposes investment in youth housing, technology centers and reopening the five platform rail station at Belmont Park as catalysts to spurring sustainable economic development.
Ross’ opponent for the 7th Senate District is incumbent Republican Jack Martins who is a freshman senator. Martins’ narrow win in 2010 was part of the national Republican - Tea Party backlash against President Obama's election and the president's foucs on the passage of the Health Care initiative. In the 7th Senate District and particularly in Elmont, the community's disdain for the perceived inaction of then Democratic incumbent, Craig Johnson, on issues of great concern was leveraged to help elect Martins. The issues then were the stalled 2006 plans for redevelopment along the Hempstead Turnpike corridor and economic development at Belmont Park's south lot.
Martins election gave Republicans the majority in the New York State Senate.
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