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Bishop, Altschuler Friday Debate to Focus on Seniors

Congressional candidates will face off for the third time this election season in Riverhead on Friday night.

Holding their third debate in Riverhead, Rep. Tim Bishop and Randy Altschuler are coming to town once again on Friday night in a forum which will center largely around one particular voting demographic: seniors.

Starting at 7 p.m. at the Long Island Aquarium's Sea Star Ballroom, WSHU's Charles Lane will be moderating a debate focusing on issues affecting Long Island's seniors, focusing on the candidates' plans for social security and Medicare.

Sponsored in conjunction with the American Association of Retired Persons, the debate will be broadcast live on 88.9 WSHU.

  • Related: Hundreds packed the first Bishop/Altschuler debate just over a month ago at First Baptist Church in Riverhead.

According to the AARP, Long Island plays host to the largest concentration of the organization's members in the nation, and a recent survey of local voters over the age of 50 conducted by AARP reported that "three-quarters say the candidates for Congress have done a poor job of explaining their plans for strengthening or reforming Social Security and Medicare."

According to census projections, Riverhead, by the year 2014, will have a total population of 39,000, 8,000 of whom will be 65 years of age and over.

Up the road from the site of Friday's debate, ongoing plans for a 189-unit assisted living community on Mill Road have hit a stumbling block after Suffolk County planners recommended against rezoning property which would permit the project. The proposal comes from Melville-based Concordia Senior Communities, and president Richard DeVito said he foresees a need for such housing for seniors locally.

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