New York State Senator, 3rd District

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Monica R. Martinez   
Democratic

Background: Martinez, 41 of Brentwood, is running on the Democratic, Working Families, Independence and Women's Equality party lines. Martinez is a third-term Suffolk legislator who was first elected to office in 2013. She has served as chair of the legislature's human services committee, vice chair of the budget and finance and education and information technology committees and was a member of the health and public safety committees. She received a bachelor's degree in history from Binghamton University in 1999 and her master's degree in secondary education from New York University in 2000. She also holds an administrative degree in school and district leadership from Stony Brook University from 2008. Before her election, Martinez worked as a teacher and as an assistant principal in the Brentwood school district.

Issues: Martinez said she opened a resource center in Brentwood that was served by county agencies such as the Human Rights Commission and the Department of Social Services. She also secured funding for a feasibility study – the first of its kind, she said – to see if Central Islip can connect to the Southwest Sewer District. Martinez said she wants to make sure constituents get an adequate return on investment for the high taxes they pay. She said she is running on common sense gun legislation, and on initiatives meant to properly equip law enforcement so officers can combat gang violence and the opioid epidemic. "I'm going to be running on my record," she said. "I will bring the leadership I had at the county to Albany. We will continue to equip law enforcement with the tools and resources needed to keep our families safe. I would like to continue to invest in clean water, as well as increasing school funding." Martinez added its time for new blood in the Senate in terms of a Democratic candidate. "Albany needs new leadership and people are seeing that from me," she said.

Dean Murray
Republican

Background: Murray, 54, of East Patchogue, is running on the Republican, Conservative, Independence and Tax Revolt lines. Since 1997, Murray has owned a Long Island-based advertising agency, D & S Advertising Inc., which publishes the Long Island Pet Lover, Long Island Job Finder and the Long Island Fugitive Finder magazines and websites. Murray graduated from the Broadcast Institute of Maryland. He worked for a decade in radio and television news industries in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and New York. Murray was first elected to the 3rd Assembly District in 2010. He served but then lost a bid for the district in 2012. He was re-elected to the seat in 2014 and has served since. He is vying for the senate seat left vacant by GOP incumbent Tom Croci.

Issues: Murray says he is running for senate, because as a member of the prospective majority party, he'd be able to more easily pass legislation. But, he says, in the Assembly he was able to reach across the aisle and work with his Democratic colleagues. He said was the only Republican co-sponsor in the assembly of the so-called Child Victim Act, which extends he statute of limitations for victims to pursue charges against their alleged perpetrators. Murray said he will push for deregulation, and hopes to pass legislation that is more business friendly.  "Small businesses are getting strangled and chased out of New York," Murray said. He will advocate for more control at the local level on school curriculum and testing. He said he would push for more vocational training, giving high school students more career options than the traditional college route. Murray added the MS-13 gang problem on Long Island is directly connected to illegal immigration and opposes New York City's sanctuary status.

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