Incumbent Assemb. Andrew Raia, R-East Northport, is looking forward to his sixth term in the 12th State Assembly District after running uncontested in Tuesday's elections.
Running uncontested has given him the ability to focus on issues surrounding Hurricane Sandy, he said, rather than raising campaign funds.
"When the storm hit I was helping people get on generators and spending time on the phone with LIPA," he said at the Huntington Republican Committee party at Jellyfish Restaurant in Centerport Tuesday night.
As he looks ahead to the next two years, he said he faces the same challenges; primarily jobs, taxes, and the environment.
"Long Island in particular, our hosing market is still suffering, we're lagging behind the rest of the country. Taxes are still going to be a huge issue and mandate relief is a big issue, because once we put the two percent tax cap on local government we now have to give them the tools in order to stay within that tax cap."
Raia is currently a ranking member of the banks committee and is a member of the housing, aging committee, and health committees. He said he will soon put in a request to become a ranking member of the health committee to delve deeper into the issues surrounding Obama's Healthcare Plan and Medicare. "I'd like to help hospitals and other health care professionals work within that framework," he said.
Local waterways are an issue close to Raia's heart. He said he's been working with scientists and engineers to develop unique and comparably inexpensive ways of removing nitrogen from Northport Harbor.
"Long Island is a seafaring community," he said. "To think of not being able to eat a clam out of Long Island Sound is disgraceful."