Last Gasp From Steve Levy? Yawn…


The race for Suffolk County executive is officially underway, with the Democrats backing Babylon Supervisor Steve Bellone and the Republicans behind county Treasurer Angie Carpenter.

One man missing from the headlines is current Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy, who bowed out of the race and returned $4 million in campaign funds in late March after the county district attorney’s office raised questions about improper fundraising within his campaign.

You’d think it would be time to regroup, maybe think about a second career, but Levy’s still trying to push local legislation targeting Suffolk immigrants.

For reasons unknown—by me, at least—Levy intends to introduce two employment verification bills at a June 7 meeting of the Suffolk County Legislature. One bill would require businesses doing business with the county to verify the work eligibility of employees through the federal E-Verify program; the second would ask for occupational licensees to cross-check license applicants with the same federal database.

Suffolk County already has already had an employee verification bill on the books since 2008, but in March, the county executive conceded that it’s never been enacted. So that should give you an idea of the real-world usefulness of such bills.

Levy spokesperson Dan Aug did not return a request for comment.

The bills are “intentionally divisive,” says Luis Valenzuela, the executive director of the Long Island Immigrant Alliance.

“It’s unnecessary, duplicative, so what are we to think about this?” Valenzuela asks. “People want to look at the current economic situation in rational, practical ways.”

You have to wonder why Levy, marginalized politically, would even bother to introduce two bills that will very likely tank with the legislature. Especially since a similar law has been on the books since 2008, and his administration did absolutely nothing to enact it.

Apparently it’s lonely at the bottom.

Image courtesy of azipaybarah via Flickr.