Upstate issues have been largely ignored in governor race
Oct 25, 2018 12:30 pm
Amanda Fries is reporting for the Times Union that issues important to residents of upstate New York have been largely ignored during the governor's race. The issue of forgotten upstate questions surfaced during the debate this week between incumbent Democrat Andrew Cuomo and Republican challenger Marc Molinaro. During that exchange, only one point was raised concerning upstate New York — funding a new stadium in Buffalo. “There was no specific discussion about upstate's declining population, the state’s job-killing business climate or crumbling local roads and bridges,” Unshackle Upstate wrote following the debate. The site urged Cuomo and Molinaro to hold a second, upstate-focused debate before election day. Molinaro said his policy positions have been greatly influenced by his experience as Dutchess County executive, and it is important to have a governor who understands how difficult it is to live upstate with "the burden of taxes and the need for job growth." Many of the same concerns are echoed by the third-party candidates who were excluded from the debate, namely independent candidate, former Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner; Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins; and Libertarian candidate, Long Island business owner Larry Sharpe. Cuomo declined to be interviewed for Fries' story, but his campaign claims that under his leadership state spending has been kept under 2 percent at the same time Medicaid costs to localities has been capped and the state pension system has been reformed, which the governor contends helps all communities. And Cuomo has made funding available for shared services and continues to support plans to improve infrastructure statewide. Read the full story in the Times Union.