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Voters GuideGeneral Election - Nov. 7, 2017

Valerie M. Cartright | General Election - Nov. 7, 2017

Valerie M. Cartright is running for Brookhaven town council member, 1st District

Valerie M. Cartright

Cartright, the only Democrat on the seven-member town board, said she has worked with community groups and residents in her district in an “open-door, collaborative approach” to find solutions. “A lot of residents have been responding favorably to the different approaches I have taken in District 1,” she said. She said she has worked on issues such as housing, crime and drug prevention, and she has created community forums to discuss issues such as land use and planning. She said she worked with residents to address illegal rental housing in the Stony Brook area, and proposed town code amendments to help address the problem. “We’ve come a long way because of us working together, which wasn’t happening when I came into office,” Cartright said. She said she hopes to complete land-use studies for the Route 25A corridor and the Port Jefferson Station-Terryville area next year. She said the town’s biggest challenge is balancing the budget without cutting services. Cartright said when she works with other members of the town board, “I always put the community interests first and I first make sure I know what’s best for the residents.” She said she talks to members of different political parties to ‘‘try to get them on the right side of the issues,” adding, “You win some and you lose some.” She said she would continue focusing on improving parks and working with the independent Setauket Harbor Task Force to improve and upgrade the harbor’s dock and park.

Cartright, 41, of Port Jefferson Station, is running on the Democratic, Women’s Equality, Working Families and Independence party lines. She is seeking her third two-year term. She received an international studies degree from West Virginia University. Cartright received her law degree from Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center. She is a civil rights attorney and former president of the Amistad Black Bar Association. She is married and has a daughter.