‘The Community Is Sick And Tired Of Being Taken For Granted’
Everly Brown says that he is running for the State Senate because the community is “sick and tired of being taken for granted” by such politicians as his opponent, incumbent Senator Malcolm Smith and other local politicians.
“Smith has run roughshod over the state and over his constituents,” Brown told The Wave this week in a long interview. “He is under investigation by both state and federal authorities for his involvement in the New Directions non-profit, for his Katrina charity, for the money he took from developers who will build his charter school, for so many things.
Now is the time to remove him from office.”
Brown has been a Democrat all his life. Because the party challenged his petition to run in the Democratic primary against Smith and had him thrown off the primary ballot, Brown looked for another line to run on.
He found it in an unlikely place. He petitioned for the Conservative Party line, met with party leaders and got the right number of signatures on his petitions.
Now, he has that line.
“There are really two Democrats in the race,” he said. “Smith on Line A and me on Line D.”
Brown bills himself as a builder, developer, financial banker and financial advisor. He hails from Rosedale on the mainland and has been involved with Democratic politics since 1992.
What are his political priorities?
“Jobs, jobs, jobs,” he said with a laugh. Then, foreclosures and education.
“We need a good vocational school in Rockaway, and that would be one of my first priorities,” he said. “The school should be geared to careers available to Rockaway residents – careers in health care and in jobs needed at JFK Airport.
There are great, untapped resources in Rockaway that need to be addressed.”
“Those are the jobs we should be training our youth to fill,” he added. “Smith said that he was going to put a vocational school at the Addabbo Health Center, but it never materialized.
I would ask Smith to tell us what happened to that school. We need to train our youth as nurses, mechanics, technicians.”
He pointed to the former Neponsit Home as a facility that could easily house a community college branch of the City University system.
“We need something accessible for our youth, something on the peninsula,” he said.
He also pointed to the crime and gang problems in Far Rockaway as another of his priorities.
“We have to stabilize Rockaway, to show the kids that gangs and guns are not the answer,” Brown said. “We need to say enough is enough and to educate our kids that there is another life. Nobody in school is talking about gangs and guns. Nobody at home is talking about it. The gangs fill that void.”
Can he beat the Democratic stalwart who is the president pro tempore of the State Senate?
He thinks he can.
“In a recent poll, more than half of the voters said they wanted anybody but Smith,” he said. “I am that other person, that other Democrat. I can beat him.” He points out that the party has become corrupt.
After the Board of Elections removed him from the Democratic primary, it left his name off the Conservative line on the absentee ballots that were recently distributed.
He is now in court, to ensure his name is on the ballot for the general election on November 2.
He calls for the Board of Elections to be made civil service so that it will be non-partisan. Now, the members are appointed by the political leaders and are beholden to those leaders, Brown says.
“I want to reform Albany,” he concluded. “I want to change the perception that it is the most dysfunctional legislature in the nation. That has to happen if people are once again to believe that their elected officials do represent them and are not in office simply to line their pockets and gain more power.”