Economic issues and government plans were cited in answering what are Medford's top issues by both Assembly candidates at Wednesday's debate held at the Medford Fire Department.
Incumbent Assemblyman Dean Murray (R) said that the economy in Medford and property taxes were the two biggest issues when asked by moderator Barbara La Monica.
"Drive up and down 112 and look at the empty stores, its rampant now. We have to turn the economy around," Murray said. "With that said, we are making strides in the right direction."
Murray cited a number of programs, including one called New York Youth Works that targets disadvantaged young adults ages 17-24 to help them get into the work force. Murray said that increasing the workforce would help bring down taxes in general.
"The more people we are able to get into the workforce, the less of a burden it is on each individual taxpayer," Murray said.
Facing the same question, challenging candidate Edward Hennessy (D) said that when previously on the Brookhaven Town Board he was involved in the initial planning and funding phase of a plan involving Medford and would want to check back in on its progress to analyze it.
"I would first looking at that document to see how the community spoke to the local government, that are looking for solutions that require state funding, that's typically in the areas of state transportation grants," Hennessy said. He then cited checking into transportation issues such as possible dangerous intersections in the area and necessary curbing.
He also cited a desire to empower people also through analyzing the plan to see how to make use of the district.
The third assembly district has been shifted for this election, and now encompasses sections of North Patchogue, East Patchogue, Farmingville, Medford, Yaphank and Brookhaven Hamlet. Patchogue Village is no longer included in this district. Election Day is on Nov. 6.
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Photos: Local Candidates Debate at Medford FD