2013-11-01 / Top Stories

Have A Look Before Heading To The Polls

BILL DE BLASIO (Democrat)

BILL DE BLASIO (Democrat)

The Wave is providing a summary of election options facing voters on Tuesday. In the interests of space, we cannot provide information on all candidates and issues. There are, for example, fifteen people on the ballot of Mayor. Go to the New York City Campaign Finance Board for more information.

FOR MAYOR
BILL DE BLASIO (Democrat)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THE CITY YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

My top priority will be addressing economic inequality. For far too long, City Hall has catered to the elite while middle and working-class families are dismissed or ignored. To tackle economic inequality, we must strengthen our education system, expand and protect affordable housing, and create strong jobs across all five boroughs. I am the only candidate who has a plan to create universal early education and after-school programs by asking the wealthiest to pay a little more in taxes.


JOE LHOTA (Republican) JOE LHOTA (Republican) WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

I understand how fragile police-community relations can put both residents and officers at risk, and I have called for true reform of Stop-and-Frisk and strong legislation to ban racial profiling. I also believe that immigrants have always been an essential part of our city and the next administration must embrace and support our vital immigrant communities.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

I have dedicated my career to taking on the elite and powerful, and standing up for taxpayers, families, and everyday New Yorkers. As an outer-borough working dad and public school parent, I care deeply about the everyday issues that are front-and-center to families: economic fairness, job creation, early education and after-school programs, child care, a real living wage, effective and respectful policing, and affordable housing.


ADOLFO CARRION JR. (Independence) ADOLFO CARRION JR. (Independence) JOE LHOTA (Republican)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THE CITY YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Creating jobs and a vibrant, diversified economy is the key to our City’s suc- cess. Government can’t create jobs, but it is responsible for creating an environment for job growth. Our government must operate more efficiently while reducing taxes and the burdensome regulations and fines that are strangling small businesses. We must focus on fostering emerging industries to create quality, good-paying jobs in all five boroughs.


LEW SIMON (Democrat) LEW SIMON (Democrat) WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Reforming government must be a top priority. We need ethics reform to get rid of corrupt politicians and educational reform to improve our schools. Public safety is also critical to our quality of life. We must ensure the NYPD has the necessary tools and resources to keep us safe from terrorists and violent criminals.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

The next Mayor needs to have the experience and vision to lead New York City on Day One. Our City is a $70 billion enterprise with more than 300,000 employees. I am the only candidate with vast experience leading complex organizations in both the private and public sectors. I have been fortunate to serve the people of this City through some of our best times of growth and transformation, but also through some of our biggest challenges, like 9/11 and Hurricane Sandy. I believe our best days are ahead and as Mayor, I will use my common sense, my vision and my experience to lead New York City forward.


ERIC ULRICH (Republican) ERIC ULRICH (Republican) ADOLFO CARRION JR.
(Independence)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THE CITY YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Reforming education to ensure our young people are prepared to participate in the economy must be a top priority. Education has become more about the needs and wants of a few adults rather than the parents and students who have long been underserved by a failing system.

WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?


DONOVAN RICHARDS (Democrat) DONOVAN RICHARDS (Democrat) New York City must remain affordable for the middle class and those who would come here to make a better life. It also must be a business-friendly city that acts as an incubator for the industries and jobs of the future. We do that by NOT raising taxes and treating our people and businesses like the government’s ATM. Our city must be a safe city and a place where innovation creates opportunity.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

I will bring the experience, common sense ideas and independent leadership New Yorkers want and deserve to City Hall. New Yorkers have had enough of special interests and the political establishment running the show. Our city is ready for real results and a bold vision for a New York that works better for everyone. It is the mayor’s duty to make decisions that improve the lives of New Yorkers. The decisions are never easy, but my track record shows that putting the people first delivers results.


SCHERIE S. MURRAY (Republican) SCHERIE S. MURRAY (Republican) FOR CITY COUNCIL –Dist 32

LEW SIMON (Democrat)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN COUNCIL DISTRICT 32 YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Rebuilding and Repair After hurricane Sandy devastated much of my district; we need strong leadership to make sure that we get much needed protection in the areas affected. We need seawalls, new boardwalk, floodgates in Jamaica Bay, double dune systems and Hesco barriers.

WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Transportation We will work to re-open the old Rockaway Beach LIRR line, get express buses to Manhattan 20 hours a day, elimination of the Crossbay Bridge toll for all Queens residents, a free or $2.00 ferry from Howard Beach and Rockaway to run 7 days a week. Get rid of camera lights on Crossbay and Woodhaven Boulevards, and HOV lanes during peak hours.

Education Build enough schools so every family will have a good neighborhood school for all their children. Middle and high schools must be old fashioned, community zoned schools, making sure that bullying is ended. Stop the closing of schools and the shuffling of students and teachers. Give resources for improvement.

Health Care We need a new state of the art community hospital in the Rockaways.

Seniors No closing or cuts for senior centers.

Quality of life Assign one building inspector to each community board to stop illegal conversions.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

Personal service. Working 25 hours a day. No phone call goes unreturned. I have established great working relationships with city, state and federal agencies to get immediate assistance. Street lights, potholes, water bills, Social Security, NYC Buildings Dept., Rapid Repair etc. We attend all meetings and community events and make myself available to assist with fundraising. I am probably the most accessible elected official. As your elected Councilman with a staff, I will be able to do 10 times more. My heart is big, but I am a pitbull fighting for your needs. I never stop until I win.

ERIC ULRICH (Republican)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN COUNCIL DISTRICT 32 YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Since taking office, Council Member Ulrich has implemented an aggressive quality-of-life agenda, targeting graffiti vandalism, sidewalk and road repair, school overcrowding and illegal dumping on city streets. He continues to advocate for the needs of homeowners and residents affected by Hurricane Sandy and has been a strong voice for improving public transportation in South Queens.

WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Woodhaven Blvd. is the most traffic congested corridor in Queens County. Council Member Ulrich is currently working with DOT to bring Bus Rapid Transit to this 3.2 mile route to help alleviate the problem. This would speed up the average daily commute time for mass transit riders by 15-20 percent and help improve the flow of traffic at nearly every major intersection.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

Citizens Union, a nonpartisan good-government group, recognized Ulrich “because of his motivated effort to create meaningful improvements in the district and [his] potential to bring new and fresh ideas to the City Council.”

FOR CITY COUNCIL – DIST 31

DONOVAN RICHARDS (Democrat)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN COUNCIL DISTRICT 31 YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

The most important issue for residents of City Council District 31 is improving our economy locally and citywide. One of the most effective ways to address this issue would be by creating local jobs for district residents.

WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Of course, the continued recovery for Hurricane Sandy is a top priority. Alongside that, we must see that the city re-invests in our public schools and libraries. We must also continue our fight to keep neighborhoods safe for our children, remove guns off our streets and fight to end the Stop-and-Frisk policy that is hurting our community and targeting our youth.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

In the few short months since I won the special election, I have proven that I am able to get results for our district. I’ve proposed city legislation that would create transparency and track relief funding to ensure that the money goes where it’s most needed and that local jobs are created from Sandy recovery efforts. I’ve also worked with the MTA to restore the A train, providing service for our constituents. There is a lot more work to do. My proven track record of fighting for our neighborhoods demonstrates that I have the leadership ability to continue to advocate on behalf of my constituents in the City Council.

FOR CITY COUNCIL – DIST 31

SCHERIE S. MURRAY (Republican)

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE IN COUNCIL DISTRICT 31 YOU WOULD ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

One of the most important issues I would address if elected as your City Council member would be Jobs. Starting a new business is a great way to create local jobs. There are many manufacturing and customer service companies looking to set up offices in communities like Rosedale, Laurelton, Springfield Gardens and Far Rockaway. I will work diligently with public and private sector organizations to ensure that resources and funds are available to help stimulate economic developments in our communities. Also, with the construction of a pool in Brookville Park qualified residents will have the opportunity to bid for a contracting job.

WHAT OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES WOULD YOU ADDRESS IF ELECTED?

Other important issues I would address if elected are Education and Gun Violence. As a new mom I want to ensure that our children are getting an education that will allow them to compete in a global economy. Alternative School Options and programs can and should be implemented to address these educational concerns. I also want to ensure that our children are safe and getting bullets off of our streets is a solution. I will introduce the Bullet Buy Back Program as one of my platforms to help combat gun violence in our community and across the five Boroughs.

WHAT MAKES YOU THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR THIS OFFICE?

I am the best candidate for City Council because I can offer solutions to the issues that are important to you. Rosedale, Laurelton, Springfield Gardens and Far Rockaway I am a new generation of leadership. We have had the same City Council leadership for the past 12 years; 12 years is enough. It’s time for a New Generation. It’s time for New Ideas and Solutions. On November 5, 2013 vote Scherie S. Murray because it’s time for New Leadership.

Proposal 1 |
Authorizing Casino Gaming

The proposed amendment to section 9 of article 1 of the Constitution would allow the Legislature to authorize up to seven casinos in New York State for the legislated purposes of promoting job growth, increasing aid to schools, and permitting local governments to lower property taxes through revenues generated. Shall the amendment be approved?

An umbrella prohibition against gambling was added to the State Constitution in 1894. The Constitution has since been amended to allow certain forms of gambling – including state lotteries and wagering on horse racing – but casino gambling remains illegal in New York.

This proposal would amend the State Constitution to permit casino gambling at no more than seven facilities statewide for the legislated purposes of promoting job growth, increasing aid to schools, and permitting local governments to lower property taxes through revenues generated. Under a law enacted by the state legislature this year, if the ballot proposal is passed, up to four casinos could be placed right away in three upstate regions: the Hudson Valley-Catskill area, the Capital District- Saratoga area, and the Southern Tier. The law prohibits additional casinos for at least seven years.

Under this law, if this ballot proposal does not pass, gambling would be authorized at up to four new video lottery gaming facilities.

Reasons to Vote YES

Casinos will jumpstart the economies of economically depressed regions upstate by attracting tourists, creating jobs, and generating revenue.

This will generate substantial tax revenues for state and local governments. Most of these revenues would be used to finance public education and lower property taxes.

Casino gambling is a fun recreational activity that should be more accessible to New Yorkers.

Many state residents already visit casinos in neighboring states such as New Jersey and Connecticut. New York should reap the profits from New York residents’ gambling, not these other states.

There should be a coherent, uniform state policy with respect to casino gambling. New York already permits video lottery terminals at racetracks and has five Vegas-style casinos on Native American tribal land, as permitted under federal law.

Reasons to Vote NO

Legalized casinos are a predatory scheme to raise money from the poor and vulnerable. They would lead to an increase in compulsive gambling, which has financial and social consequences for victims and their loved ones.

Casinos attract illegal activities such as forgery, fraud, theft, embezzlement, and prostitution. These and other problems caused by gambling could cost the state nearly $400 million per year.

We should not permit casinos in New York before we more carefully study their potential impact. Casinos do not guarantee economic development, and sometimes have little overall economic effect.

Casinos in New York will not be especially profitable, and will have a limited impact on regional economies, because the Northeast has recently become saturated with casinos.

This proposal would have minimal short-term impact downstate because casinos would not be developed in New York City and nearby counties for at least seven years.

We’re always promised that new state revenues will go toward education and lowering taxes, but this never seems to happen.

Proposal 6 | Increasing Age until which
Certain State Judges Can Serve

The proposed amendment to the Constitution, amending sections 2 and 25 of article 6, would increase the maximum age until which certain state judges may serve as follows: (a) a Justice of the Supreme Court would be eligible for five additional two-year terms after the present retirement age of 70, instead of the three such terms currently authorized; and (b) a Judge of the Court of Appeals who reaches the age of 70 while in office would be permitted to remain in service on the Court for up to 10 years beyond the present retirement age of 70 in order to complete the term to which that Judge was appointed. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

Judges of the Court of Appeals — the state’s highest court — serve 14-year terms, but under the State Constitution, they must retire once they reach the mandatory retirement age of 70, even if they have not served their terms to completion. The proposed amendment would permit a Judge who reaches the age of 70 while in office to remain in service on the Court for up to 10 additional years in order to complete the term to which that Judge was appointed.

Justices of the Supreme Court – the state’s trial and appellate division courts – also must retire at age 70 under the Constitution, but are permitted to serve up to three two-year terms after they reach retirement age if their services are needed and they are deemed competent to perform the full duties of the office. This proposal would permit Supreme Court justices to serve two additional post-retirement terms, also allowing them to serve until age 80.

Reasons to Vote YES

The current mandatory retirement ages were set in 1869. Considering that life expectancy is now much higher and many senior citizens lead active and healthy lives, it no longer makes sense to force judges to retire at age 70.

This proposal will allow the most experienced judges to remain on the bench. Older judges may be more effective than younger judges due to their experience and the fact that their decisions may be less influenced by personal career prospects.

Four current members of the U.S. Supreme Court are over 70, and have showed no signs of slowing down. If these judges sat on New York State’s highest court, they would have already been forced to retire.

Reasons to Vote NO

We need younger and more diverse judges to bring a fresh perspective to the courts – not older judges serving longer.

This proposal could result in judges serving after they are no longer mentally or physically capable.

All judges in New York State should be subject to the same mandatory retirement age. This proposal creates a two-tiered system where statewide judges can retire later than judges in local and specialized courts, whose current retirement age of 70 would be unaffected.

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