Paper That Had Previously Endorsed Kate Murray For Hempstead Town Supervisor Looks For Enlightened Leadership In Harvey Levinson
Our choice in Hempstead
Looking for enlightened leadership
For 100 years, one dynasty has controlled the Kingdom of Hempstead. Members of this ruling class have splendid jobs and special privileges because the townsfolk pay mighty taxes. But now, this burden has become too heavy and people want change. So a smart man, with a strong voice, has stepped forward, announcing that the time has come to take back the keys to the kingdom. He's right. Let Harvey Levinson end the reign of the Republicans in the Town of Hempstead.
Two years ago, we endorsed Kate Murray for her first full term as supervisor. We were optimistic that she would become independent of the Republican bosses. Murray, 43, is bright, pleasant and has taken some steps to invigorate Hempstead, the nation's largest town and the most diverse on Long Island. She tackled the growing illegal housing problem by putting the burden on landlords to prove they don't have multiple tenants in one-family homes, for example.
Unfortunately, patronage is the currency of the realm in Hempstead, and Murray has done little to stop it. She cut the payroll by 150 slots to 2,000 - but also found room to hire her two brothers. There are still 300 GOP committeemen on the rolls, as well as the wife of ex-Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, himself once the town's supervisor. Appointing Katuria D'Amato to the board of zoning appeals was a bold display of cronyism in a town that invented the form. Worse, Murray defends the town's five sanitation districts, better known as patronage mills. Levinson wants to fold the districts into the town's sanitation department, saying it would save taxpayers $36 million.
Levinson, 65, is former chief deputy in the Nassau district attorney's office, a tough prosecutor. He would prune away decades of wasteful government. Two years ago he scored an upset victory to head the Nassau County Board of Assessors. In that job, he has cracked down on illegal multifamily accessory apartments in single-family homes. Levinson has a vision of better government for Hempstead and the only people he would owe are the voters. We endorse Levinson.
Copyright 2005 Newsday Inc.
- - -
CLICK HERE TO READ THE COMMUNITY ALLIANCE ENDORSEMENT OF HARVEY LEVINSON FOR TOWN OF HEMPSTEAD SUPERVISOR.