OF THE SYRACUSE METROPOLITAN AREA
Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 8. Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. To vote, you must be registered with the Onondaga County Board of Elections. For more information on polling places, call the Board of Elections at 435-3312 or the at 422-9797. Note: Addresses without a city listed are in Syracuse.State Supreme Court Justice
What do you bring to the bench that sets you apart from other judicial candidates?
Democratic, Conservative 7638 Coloins St., Lowville 13367 email@example.com; www.electmerrell.com Profession: Lewis County Judge and Surrogate, Family Court Judge, Acting Supreme Court Justice Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BA, St. Lawrence University
I am a full-time judge serving as Lewis County judge and surrogate and Family Court judge for eight years and as acting Supreme Court justice for the last four years. I am also the only candidate highly qualified by the Independent Judicial Election Qualification Commission, a nonpartisan, blue ribbon panel of judges and experienced attorneys. I am the only candidate having heard and decided cases in each county in the fifth Judicial District.
Democratic, Conservative 5767 Route 31, Verona 13478 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.patrickmacrae.us Profession: Attorney Education: JD, SUNY Buffalo; BA, SUNY Buffalo
I have an unmatched depth of specialized Supreme Court trial and litigation experience spanning nearly 32 years, a breadth of experience that includes having represented the state Commission on Judicial Conduct in a seminal matter supporting its authority to oversee the ethical conduct of the judiciary, which was considered by the New York Law Journal to be one of the most important cases in New York in 2003, and the appropriate temperament required for all judges.
Democratic, Working Families, Veteran’s Party 112 Limestone Lane, Syracuse 13219 magnarelliforsupremecourt@ gmail.com Profession: Attorney Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BA, Le Moyne College
More than 33 years of legal experience, with 30 years in the private sector as a practicing attorney specializing in civil law and 3½ years as judicial law clerk to state Supreme Court Justice Richard Aronson. Represented clients before practically all levels of state courts and the federal District Court – Northern District of New York. I have always treated those I have dealt with respect and dignity. I have the ability to assist parties in finding the middle ground to resolve disputes and avoid needless litigation.
Democratic Veterans, Working Families 107 Hampshire Road, Syracuse 13203 thomas.buckel@hancocklaw. com; www.tombuckel.com Profession: Partner, Hancock & Estabrook; Onondaga County Legislator Education: JD, University of Virginia School of Law; graduate work, Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs; BA, Canisius College
Most diverse public, legal and adjudication experiences. Deepest understanding of communities and hardships faced by families, farms, businesses. Demonstrated commitment to public good over powerful interests. Only candidate who pledged not to hear any case involving any donor for at least two years. Equal justice, no exceptions, Impartial, fair, hardest working, innovative, compassionate. One of five of the nine candidates determined qualified or highly qualified through rigorous evaluation performed by Independent State Judicial Election Commission.
Republican, Independence P.O. Box 94, New Hartford 13413 email@example.com; www.gallforjustice.com Profession: Attorney and principal court attorney to the Honorable Barry Donalty, acting Supreme Court Justice Education: JD, SUNY Buffalo; BA, Boston College
Our courts have never faced greater scrutiny or more demanding caseloads. I will bring a new model of judicial leadership to the bench. In addition to 13 years of experience as chief adviser to Judge Donalty, I have the energy and work ethic necessary to serve those whose lives literally depend on the state Supreme Court. I have seen the judiciary from all vantage points: private practice attorney, counsel to a superior court judge, and as victim of a violent crime. I know how judges think and understand how victims feel.
Republican, Independence 115 Ray St., Ilion 13357 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.klosnerforjudge.com Profession: First Assistant District Attorney, Herkimer County Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BA, Siena College
As a husband, father and lifelong upstate resident, I will bring to the bench trial experience, local knowledge and common sense to render reasoned decisions that provide positive solutions. As Herkimer County’s chief assistant district attorney, I have served the people tirelessly, taking child molesters and violent felons off the streets. I’ve spent virtually all of my professional life working in the courtroom. I have earned the reputation by my peers as a tough but fair prosecutor and a staunch defender of victims’ rights.
Republican 18388 Alpine Ridge Road, Watertown email@example.com; www.judgemcclusky.com Additional Party Endorsements: Conservative, Independence Profession: Attorney Education: JD, SUNY Buffalo; BA, Hartwick College
I am a trial attorney, having conducted 300 trials including approximately 30 jury trials. I know the law and I know the courtroom. In addition, I have been a judge for the last nine years handling thousands of cases from traffic infractions to felonies and $50 small claims matters, to business disputes involving hundreds of thousands of dollars. I understand these matters are important to the litigants and I treat each case that way.
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Republican,Conservative Veterans 4964 Adah Drive, Manlius 13104 johnstone4supremecourt@ gmail.com; johnstone4 supremecourt.com Profession: Attorney; Law Clerk to state Supreme Court Justice James Murphy Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BA, St. Michael’s College
More than 100 lawyers have become honorary cochairs of my campaign. I have 17 years experience as a civil trial lawyer in both private practice and as a senior assistant corporate counsel for the city of Syracuse. For the past seven years I have been the principal law clerk to state Supreme Court Justice James Murphy. I have been found qualified by the Onondaga County Bar Association and the independent Judicial Election Qualification Commission. I have also received the highest rating of “qualified and commended” given by the Central New York Women’s Bar Association.County Executive
Republican, Independence P.O. Box 291, DeWitt 13214 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.joaniemahoney.com Profession: County Executive; Attorney Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BS, SU
By far the most effective thing New York state government could do to encourage job creation is reform the programs it requires local governments to pay for and I applaud the governor for beginning that process. The costs for those state programs are passed on as property tax bills and detrimentally affect any economic development efforts.
During the governor’s campaign, he promised to move from state control of economic development monies to local control. The Regional Economic Development Councils are an example of that shift. We as a region can choose our best economic development ideas ourselves and move forward.District Attorney
Republican,Conservative and Independence Maple Grove Drive, Tully 13059 Profession: Attorney Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BA, SU
I am proud of many accomplishments in my 20 years as district attorney. Among the most notable is my reopening and investigation into the deaths of five infants between 1965 and 1971. That investigation resulted in the prosecution of their mother Waneta Hoyt in 1995 for murdering her five babies and literally changed the way we look at infant deaths in this country.
I am also proud of helping to establish a state-ofthe-art forensic crime lab in this county. I am proud of our efforts to speak for child victims, by creating one of the first Special Victim’s Bureau in the state, a police Abused Persons Unit and recently, a Child Advocacy Center. Most recently, I was responsible for establishing and currently chair the state District Attorneys Association Committee on Fair and Ethical Administration of Justice, which focuses on developing best practices and ethics to prevent wrongful convictions.County Comptroller
Did not respond.Onondaga County Legislator
The 2 percent tax cap signed into law this year creates an imbalance between a limit on property taxes and rising costs for statemandated programs. As a county legislator, what measures would you propose to compensate for the inability to raise taxes more than 2 percent?
Brian F. May
Republican, Conservative, Independence 1395 River Bend Drive, Baldwinsville 13027 email@example.com; www.citizens4may.com Profession: Business Consultant Education: BS, SUNY Empire State College
The 2 percent tax cap is a perfect example of counterproductive over-regulation by government. Capping the levy does not address the core problem of overall government spending. Fear of downstream penalties invoked by increasing mandates, or by the cap itself, is actually prohibiting well-run municipalities from reducing overall spending. As county legislator, I will fight for mandate relief and meaningful reform of the tax cap while striving to improve government efficiency at every opportunity.
Republican, Conservative, Independence, Veterans 4350 Loveland Drive, Liverpool 13090 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.johndougherty.org Profession: Engineer Education: MBA, Syracuse University; MS, SU; BS, SUNY Buffalo
The county should work closer with New York state to get them to help us with the costs of mandated programs. Without this, anything we can do will matter very little. Beyond that, we should be looking beyond property taxes to increase revenue. We should encourage more public/private partnerships that encourage growth in blighted neighborhoods and revitalization of abandoned or underused industrial sites. We should be doing absolutely everything we can to encourage tourism and increased commerce from outside the area. We have had recent successes in this area and we should leverage that into the future.
Republican 7021 VanAntwerp Drive, Cicero 13039 legislatorbill.meyer@ yahoo.com; www.electbill.meyer.com Profession: Insurance agent Education: BA, Kansas State Teachers College
We must accept the fact that the fiscal crisis in Albany is for real.
Therefore, we must take the following steps. 1. Halt all but essential purchases until the state budget is passed.
2. Stop all new hiring except for essential areas. 3. Start a complete budget review process now to evaluate and rank all services and costs. We can no longer do a budget on an annual basis. It must be an ongoing process.
Kesel Democratic, Working Families, Independent 8406 Brewerton Road, Cicero 13031 email@example.com Profession: Retired Education: North Syracuse Central Schools
The 2 percent cap helps to control property taxes but not without sacrifice. Every department needs to be examined using consolidation where redundancy with state, town, village or city services exists. Working together to establish a joint health insurance consortium with towns and villages could negotiate better premiums and enhance coverage. Prepare to negotiate salaries and benefits that compensate current employees and attract new employees. Convince Albany that a new pension tier will lower obligations in the public employees’ retirement system
Republican 4855 Thornwood Drive, Liverpool 13088 firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Small business owner Education: Columbia College
As a current county legislator I realize that measures must be addressed regarding the imbalance between a limit on property taxes and the rising cost for state mandates. I recently sponsored a resolution in support of permanently ending new and existing unfunded state mandates on local governments, and ending state budget actions that simply shift costs from the state to local taxpayers. We must also work to consolidate services and costs without depriving our taxpayers of the necessary services they require.
David Stott Democratic
4854 Driftwood Dive, Liverpool 13090 email@example.com; www.voteforDaveStott.com Profession: Independent manufacturing representative Education: Syracuse University; SUNY Oswego; Herkimer County Community College
Throughout the 4th District, 2011 property taxes increased significantly: 73 percent. In Salina, county taxes and add the bad decision to pass a tax-sharing agreement that led to a 22 percent increase in the village of Liverpool and a 36 percent increase in the Lakeland area. I never voted for a budget with a county property tax increase and will use my experience to make better decisions because we can’t afford any more property tax increases.
Republican, Independence/ Conservative 437 Jewell Drive, Liverpool 13088 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.kathyrapp.com Profession: Director, ACLS (Alberta Crowe Letter Service) Education: BS, SUNY Oneonta
Mandate relief is critical if we have any hope of continuing county services while containing property tax growth. Without that relief, the 2 percent cap will reduce county government to only a delivery service for social service programs. To that end, I introduced two resolutions along with our budget. The first asked directly for no unfunded mandates and the second urged passage of two bills already on file in the state Senate and in the Assembly. Both call for the state to assume the cost of Medicaid in ever-increasing percentages over the next 10 years. Last year the county absorbed $20 million in new unfunded mandate costs. This year we absorbed another $17 million. At the same time, we reduced the property tax levy by $35 million. In other words, the sales tax the county “kept” was directly turned over to the state to pay for ever-rising mandated costs. This is obviously unsustainable. If we are required to raise taxes by no more than 2 percent yet continue to receive increases that amount to 12 percent of our levy, our only recourse will be to cut local services.
Democratic, Working Families, Veterans 3798 Oak Hill Road, Marietta 13110 email@example.com; www.tobyshelley.com Profession: Sheriff’s deputy
Having read the 2011 county budget, 66 percent is mandated programs, the next largest expenditure is public safety at 32 percent. With a strong background in public safety, I would look at ways we could govern smarter. We can better manage the largest unmandated part of the county budget by taking a look at unjustified take-home cars in the county which will save more than $1 million. Better scheduling of personnel could save another $1 million in overtime costs.
Republican, Independence 4753 Howlett Hill Road, Marcellus 13108 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.mikeplochocki.com Profession: Attorney Education: BA, Cornell University; JD, SUNY Buffalo College of Law
I worked in Gov. Pataki’s office with the specific task of advising the governor’s staff on cutting wasteful state regulations and state mandates. From a position of experience, I want to lead the County Legislature’s effort in lobbying the state to cut back its mandates to the counties. This has to be done because, quite frankly, this conundrum cannot be solved without the state eliminating, reducing, or at least placing a similar cap on the cost of some or all state-mandated programs.
Danny J. Liedka
Republican 211 McCool Ave., East Syracuse 13057 email@example.com; www.liedka.com Profession: Business development manager, New York state, Marriott Corporation; sports commentator, Time Warner Cable Sports Education: East Syracuse-Minoa High School
Right out of the gate, public-private partnerships need to be created. If there are operations that can be handled by private sector companies, and take the burden off taxpayers, I’m all for it. This is a complex question, with no short-answer solution. The biggest problem lies in Albany, with the Medicaid program. I fully support legislation, currently pending in the state Senate and Assembly, that would freeze county Medicaid expenditures, and gradually return all Medicaid costs to the state over an eight-year period.
Democratic ,Working Families 112 W. Yates St., East Syracuse 13057 firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Small business owner Education: Central City Business Institute The sharing of government services and duplication of services. Are our taxpayers paying for the same service from more than one government agency? Can we effectively consolidate services, keeping the same level of service for our community while saving money? Where can we get the most for our money? Look into purchasing practices of the county to ensure we are using collective buying power, state contract prices, centralize purchasing would benefit other municipalities.
Republican, Veterans 103 Hunter Ave., Syracuse 13204 email@example.com Profession: Education: High school graduate
I would need more information to answer this question. Be it known that I would rely on help and guidance from our county executive and other legislators, but most importantly from the voters in the district for additional help and guidance.
Democratic, Conservative 205 Maple Road, Syracuse 13219 firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Executive Vice President CWA Local 1123, Verizon Communications Education: BS, Buffalo State; AAS, Onondaga Community College
Onondaga County has a $1.2 billion operating budget. State mandates comprise a good portion of that overall budget. I will work to initiate conversations between village, town and city lawmakers to collectively voice our concerns to state officials and work on ways to reduce costs. I will also work to reduce county operating costs. For example, we should initiate discussions with the Sheriff’s Department regarding video arraignment. We need to examine countywide ways to reduce soaring health care costs, as well as doing our very best to try and find ways to increase revenues aside from raising taxes.
Republican, Independence 260 S. Edwards Ave., Syracuse 13206 email@example.com; www.bobandrews2011.com
Profession: Manager of Business Development, Madison Cortland ARC Education: MBA, Northeastern University; BA, Colgate University
We are at the point in the county budget where there is very little to cut. We have done a lot of cutting in the last several years and it has allowed the county to idle in neutral and survive. However, going forward we need to be much more proactive. First, we need to start investing in our community to create more job and business opportunities in order to grow our tax base. We must increase our revenues without raising taxes. The only way to do that is to increase population, business activity and the overall economy. Onondaga County can also be at the forefront of developing countywide vocational education hubs for high school students. We need to provide a better educational opportunity for those children that are not going to college and at the same time providing a skilled workforce for our manufacturing and business community.
Second, the county must be united in the effort to reform and reduce state mandates. The county executive cannot be the only voice coming from the county on this issue. We need to take advantage of the relationship the county executive has developed with Albany and the governor to insist upon immediate mandate reform. As a county legislator, I will add my voice and my efforts to reducing the burden of state-mandated programs.
Democratic 228 Brattle Road, Syracuse 13203 firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Financial Adviser Education: Master’s of Public Administration, Syracuse University; BA, University of Notre Dame
With the support of cost-cutting and sales tax revenues, the County Legislature has been reducing the property tax levies for 2011 and 2012. City residents saw their property taxes reduced 17 percent for this year and will be reduced and additional 5 percent for 2012. I hope to be a strong factor in continuing this trend going forward.
Democratic 7665 Hunt Lane, Fayetteville 13066 email@example.com; sites.google.com/ gwynmannionforcountyleg Profession: Engineer Education: BS, Purdue University
Did not respond.
Kevin Holmquist Republican, Conservative, Independence, Taxpayers First 123 Summerhaven Drive S., East Syracuse 13057 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.kevinholmquist.com Profession: Licensed Relationship Manager, Key Bank &
Education: BS, Syracuse University, Political Science; AAS, Onondaga Community College
We need mandate relief from New York state government. The tax cap is meaningless without mandate relief. We need to be able to handle our own affairs at the local level of government. We have been reducing spending and getting the county out of areas that we never should have been in. We need to continue this aggressively.
Democratic 4782 Burrstone Road, Syracuse 13215 email@example.com; www.buffyquinn.com Profession: Associate Director of Sustainability, Byrne Dairy Education: MA, University of Denver; BS, University of Southern Mississippi
The 2 percent tax cap shortchanges students, schools and working families while it shifts more of the burden of providing high-quality education to local communities. In Onondaga County, school districts have already cut budgets, and teachers have made sacrifices with increased class size, pay freezes, and a lengthened class day. As a member of the County Legislature, I will support programs like Say Yes to Education that provide grant money to schools who have committed to innovative educational programs.
Republican , Conservative, Independence, Veterans 4482 Renee Meadows Drive, Syracuse 13202 pkilmartin@oncountyleg. com; www.patkilmartin.com Profession: Attorney, small business owner Education: JD, New England School of Law; BA, University of Rochester
Both officials need to recognize and respect the two offices and understand the need for checks and balances. Improving communication would be the key to providing better service to the community. If both officeholders understand, recognize and acknowledge that the voters of the city will benefit from oversight, checks, balances and transparent review, then both offices can more effectively carry out their duties. The focus should not be directly at friction between the individuals, but how both offices can provide better service to their prospective bosses, the voters of the city.
David H. Knapp
Republican, Conservative, Independence P.O. Box 467, LaFayette 13084 firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Clinical Laboratory Sales Education: BS, United States Military Academy at West Point
The 2 percent tax cap instituted by New York state has created a very difficult situation for local governments because the state Legislature and the governor only passed half of what they said they would. They never went back and addressed the litany of unfunded mandates that they have been burdening local governments with for years. In LaFayette, for example, for 2012, the town’s contribution to the state retirement system increased so dramatically that by itself it was more that the 2 percent tax cap allowed. We were forced to find cuts in other areas to make up for that increase. At the county level we must continue to pressure our state-elected officials to finish the job and cut unfunded mandates. We must also take a topto-bottom look at the county government to look for duplications of service and make some potentially difficult decisions concerning cutting programs that in these tough times are considered nice to have versus need to have.
Democratic, Working Families, Veterans 3161 Route 91, Jamesville 13078 email@example.com; www.philforcountylegislature.com Profession: Maintenance supervisor, Syracuse University; Peace officer, town of Pompey Education: BA, Syracuse University
With any new program or law, the first year is most critical. One almost has to take a wait-and-see position. However, we are not without options. There is a tax cap override process (if needed) to raise taxes, I would caution in doing such until we see what effect the 2 percent cap will have on each area.
Other options include tapping into grants and subtitles, creative management of lighting/water districts, putting off major purchases, lower pensions costs, etc. Plus there is always the option of tapping the reserves to help compensate.
The bottom line: Any decision made we all will have to deal with the political realities someone is not going to be happy about it. We cannot let that influence us in our decision-making for the public good. I feel the key to success has to be open dialogue and communicating, being as transparent in the decision-making
Derek T. Shepard Jr.
Republican, Independence 127 Northrup Blvd., Syracuse 13209 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.derekshepard.com Profession: Assisted living administration Education: JD, Syracuse University College of Law; BS, SU
Mandates must be addressed immediately. Unfortunately, this is not within the direct power of county government. Discretionary costs can be reduced, but over time there would be nothing left to cut. It would be best to bring specific mandated costs to the voters’ attention so they can bring pressure to bear on state representatives to either reduce mandates, provide supporting state funding, or move administration of mandated programs such as Medicaid back to the state.
Democratic, Working Families 4 Comstock Road, Baldwinsville 13027 email@example.com; www.scarmo.com Profession: Chef Education: AAS, Mohawk Valley Community College
Regarding the 2 percent cap, legislators need to take a good look at the county budget and start going line by line and eliminate the excess spending in the budget. Let’s take a look at take-home vehicles and the cost to taxpayers. Are all those vehicles a necessity? Middle-class America has been carrying the burden and sacrificing so politicians can have these perks. Let’s get back to basics because that’s all taxpayers can afford. For too long taxpayers were an open-ended credit card that government just kept on going to.
Republican, Conservative 1478 Gunbarrel Road, Baldwinsville 13027 Profession: Retired Education: State Police Academy
Being the Republican Conservative county legislator for the past 20 years, we have somewhat addressed that issue in the 2012 budget. We have reduced the number of county employees and made cuts in other departments. We have left enough in the fund balance account if need be to offset any necessary increases above the 2 percent next year.
Republican, Conservative, Independence, Veterans 8133 Rizzo Drive, Clay 13041 firstname.lastname@example.org; www.voteforcaseyjordan.com Profession: Attorney Education: JD, Hofstra University College of Law; BA, Vassar College
Implementation of mandate reform so as to minimize the impact of unfunded mandates on the county budget. This would include, but not be limited to, urging Albany to assume full responsibility for the payment of all state-mandated costs, such as Medicaid, food stamps, aid for dependent children and the other safety net programs that the county is mandated to provide to its citizens. This would also include the exclusion of mandated costs from the calculation of the dollar amount of the 2 percent tax cap.
Democratic, Working Families, Veterans 117 Breakspear Road, Syracuse 13219 email@example.com; www.citizens4markenglish. com Profession: Attorney Education: JD
The austerity now required is already affecting vital services and important cultural assets. For the time being any county legislator will have to carefully scrutinize any spending and hold the line on any tax increase. However, in the long run only an increase in our tax base by a concerted job creation program will resolve the problem. That too should be a great concern for all elected officials.
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Democratic, Working Family 125 Hudson St., Syracuse 13204 I THINK firstname.lastname@example.org Profession: Staffing Coordinator, Rosewood Heights Health Center Education: High school graduate
The 2 percent tax cap is good for homeowners and landowners who continue to be taxed at alarming rates. We need to address the unfunded mandated services that the state puts on counties. As a county legislator, I will continue to look for ways to collaborate with other municipalities for the services that we deliver.