Tom Suozzi’s comments at the debate were strikingly similar to statements he made when he campaigned in 2001, 2005 and again in 2009. But, unlike Mangano, Suozzi had relatively few if any actual accomplishments to talk about from his eight years in office. He continually dodged the fact that he hiked property taxes and racked up millions in debt for future generations to pay off.
Tom Suozzi admitted his inability to accomplish development or job growth in the County since his first days in office while. County Executive Ed Mangano, on the other hand, cited a brand-new privately financed world-class sports and entertainment district that was recently approved for construction at the site of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Mangano also cited dozens of community development and revitalization projects completed in Nassau’s villages and citied and other economic development projects that are pending since he took office. He spoke about the brand new thriving business center at the former Grumman property in Bethpage which he started as a legislator and continued as county executive.
The debate at The Wheatley School in Old Westbury was hosted and moderated by the Village Officials Association
While Suozzi continued to speak of visions rather than any successes while serving in office, Mangano spoke about the new developments in communications that he implemented in Nassau’s Office of Emergency Management, including how it connects bilingual organizations and other government agencies. Mangano also cited a 10% reduction in crime since he took office and the way Nassau’s intelligence-led police force has become a model for police forces nationwide.
When is comes to creating new jobs, Mangano noted that his administration achieved the lowest unemployment rate in the region; he said he refuses to increase the already high taxes of Nassau residents to make up for an inherited deficit and that he has, instead, reduced government by 20%.
In 2008-2009, Suozzi oversaw the County’s lowest sales tax growth in at least two decades and witnessed massive job losses throughout Nassau. Suozzi also defended criticism for hiking his own pay check by $65,000 a year while Mangano touted the fact that he gave up four automatic pay raises.