Kevin Thomas has left it up to voters to decide if he deserves another term as a state senator.
The Democratic incumbent from Levittown said his first entry into politics was a job in the legal profession, helping people pay off private student loans and credit card debt.
“I’ve decided to be a good lawyer, a legal services representative who goes to court every day and defends the little man when he’s sued,” Thomas told reporters at a recent Herald roundtable. “So this was a bigger platform for me to help others.”
After being elected to Albany in 2018, the first bill he passed helped create what became known as the Student Loan Borrower Rights Act. It was intended to allow state financial services departments to audit federal student loan services like Sallie Mae.
Thomas is also promoting his efforts to fund local schools, the University of Nassau Medical Center, infrastructure repairs, small businesses, and efforts to clean up the pollution associated with the Northrop Grumman Plume. .
Thomas also supports the need for consumers to have more control over their information and how that information is accessed and used.
“There are many data brokers out there. I will,” said Thomas. “So there’s a lot of accountability I’m trying to run here.”
Thanks to a Republican-led lawsuit, an independent third party was called in to redraw the lines based on 2020 Census data. was modified to include South Shore communities such as , Freeport and Rockville Center.
It has also transitioned to excluding not only where Thomas lives, but also his challengers. Both were granted his one-time exemption. That means the winner will have to move or find a new Senate district by the next election.
Thomas is no stranger to bipartisan efforts. Although the two major political parties often disagree, they maintain a civilized partnership in Albany.
Like those on the other side of the aisle, Thomas is an outspoken proponent of keeping the 2% cap on property tax increases, making Nassau a more affordable place to live. We are focusing on
“People who can’t afford anything are still living with their parents,” he said. “This is a question that everyone has been grappling with for years. If you’re making $50,000 to $60,000, what’s affordable? There are some innovative ways to do this, We need to do more.”
But for public safety, Thomas takes a multipronged approach.
“If you look at the data here, recidivism rates before and after bail reform are about the same,” he said.
He indicated that under the law, judges now have discretionary powers to decide who is eligible for bail. It said it passed a law allowing arrested gun traffickers to be prosecuted and continues to help fund mental health programs.
“There’s a lot going on here and it’s totally unfair to blame bail reform for everything,” Thomas said. “For decades, people who had no money when they were arrested for a misdemeanor or non-violent felony were kept in prison until the day of their trial.”