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It's Time for Long Island to Be Great Again

Lou Imbroto is running for Assembly in the 13th District.

Over the past few months, I have traveled Nassau County getting to know the communities that comprise the 13th Assembly District. As I've gotten to know our residents and listen to their concerns, the same themes come up over and over again: Why are my taxes so astronomically high? How can I afford to remain on Long Island?  What does the future hold for our children, who can't find jobs or an affordable place to live?

These concerns are tangible and real. We pay some of the highest local taxes in the country so that we can provide our children a top quality education. We make enormous sacrifices to send them to college. But once they're grown, they take these skills elsewhere when they move off of Long Island due to a lack of jobs and an inability to afford the enormous cost of housing and property taxes. Instead of a better future when they graduate, they are faced with an impossible choice: leave their families and their homes behind and move somewhere else or accept a lower standard of living in order to remain on Long Island.

These problems don't just affect young people. Our seniors, the ones who built Long Island, spent their lives here, and who made it one of the greatest places to live in the country, find that they can't afford to spend their retirement here. Middle-class families, once the backbone of Long Island, can't afford to stay in their own homes. Even those I've met who can afford the high cost are finding fewer and fewer reasons to stay: “We can live anywhere,” they've told me, “why pay so much to stay here?”

Have we turned our back on these people? Have we forgotten what made Long Island great?

There was a time when Long Island had a place for everyone.  Soldiers returning from the war, fishermen going out for their daily catch, and city dwellers seeking extra space could make their homes next to the estates of aristocrats and wealthy industrialists.  On Long Island lay the promise of a better life for all. 

Year by year, that ideal becomes less attainable due to rising taxes, a statewide atmosphere hostile to business, the rising cost of education, and a general lack of jobs and affordable housing.  It's time that we reflect on where these policies have left us and what we must do to make Long Island thrive once again.

In the Long Island of our past, we've seen what greatness looks like. It's time for us to be great again. 

-Lou Imbroto

For more information about Lou, visit www.Imbroto.com & www.facebook.com/Imbroto

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Kyle Blaker August 16, 2012 at 04:23 PM
It was great meeting you the other day, Lou. You'll do a fine Job in Albany.
Rich August 16, 2012 at 04:37 PM
There are many advantages to merging 46 individual water districts into one central Nassau County Water Authority, cost savings being the biggest. Add to that uniform pricing sructure across the County, ability to move water across the County though increased cross-connections, and the ability to regulate groundwater pumpage across the County. Unfortunately, the districts belong to a strong lobby -the Long Island Water Conference- and are no doubt against such a move.
job August 20, 2012 at 03:28 PM
this post presents a false choice: lower taxes or your loved ones will move away. taxes are almost never the reason someone moves, though they may contribute to the choice. what's more likely is that long island is experiencing something many other communities currently experience and have experienced over a long many years - the young generation intends to move into a more urban environment with more stimulation and return to suburbia when they have settled in their careers. the post fails to make out even the case for why people should stay in long island or why long islanders care about this issue... it may make a good talking point to say "we love the community" but I believe the issue is closer to maintaining a broader tax base, to pay for the same level of amenities that long islanders are used to without dipping deeper into the pockets of the established residents. ultimately, this makes the proposal at question not one of caring for the youth of the community, but of how the establishment can reinvigorate the community off the backs and paychecks of a new generation. "we gave you good schools! now pay us back!" (nevermind that good schools accompany lower crime rates and overall satisfaction with life for the surrounding residents) it is about a generation that has enjoyed the excesses of a historically unprecedented period of growth and is now unwilling to cede their standard of living to the current economic situation.
Peter August 20, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Taxes are main reason everyone is leaving Long Island! I've never encountered anyone who left Long Island for any other reason then the high standard of living and having their life revolve around working to pay the bills. Everyone loves Long Island, we just can't afford it!
Chris February 13, 2013 at 04:36 PM
Job, I'm in my late 20's, I want nothing more than to stay here on Long Island where my family is. I love Long Island and everything about it, but I'm at the point where I have a 2 year old daughter and one on the way and need to make the best choice for my family. Me and my wife are ready to buy a house. We've gone looking here and are extremely disappointed with what we see. Old run down houses that need a ton of work with taxes averaging close to $10,000 per year. My sister in law lives in Virginia so we've also been looking at houses there when we visit. After looking in VA we were even more disappointed because it became even clearer that we will probably have to leave Long Island, our friends, and most of our family members behind. Brand new houses (cheaper than old dilapidated ones here), taxes around 3k-4k, and more jobs. All I see is a lot of talk from politicians here and NOTHING ever gets done. The problem is there's too many people milking this thing hoping it never ends while the hard working tax payers suffer. Well, I refuse to pay into it and support a bunch of unproductive incompetent losers that can't get a damn thing done to start making some changes here. The #1 problem is the taxes. If taxes were much lower I'd stay in a heart beat, but as usual, all talk and no walk. Recent surveys show 50% of the youth plan on leaving because of the exorbitant cost of living. In the near future, there won't be enough people to keep the party going on Long Island.

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