By Dave Renzi, candidate, State Senate
Upstate New York is truly at a crossroads. The Wall Street collapse and its impact on New York’s economy and state budget is being felt in the factories and storefronts, and at kitchen tables all across the region.
It’s a wake-up call both to government and working men and women that our policy of relying almost exclusively on risky financial markets ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ and ignoring Upstate’s once-solid, industrial base ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ has been a mistake.
But there’s still so much at risk. As we struggle to climb out of the economic slump, New York City politicians will use enormous political pressure to put the needs of that region before the rest of the state.
They are already talking about a “liberal revolution” that will shift more of our tax dollars to downstate and inner-city school districts, restrict gun and property rights laws, and divert more low-cost energy and economic development dollars to their districts, at our expense.
How do we know? Because it happened before.
In the wake of the World Trade Center attack, Albany raised spending and imposed the largest tax increase in our state’s history. That meant a longer and slower recovery for our state, compared to our competitors, and fewer jobs.
Some regions of the state still haven’t recovered. New unemployment figures show that our region still has the same number of jobs as six years ago. No growth. No new opportunity.
Ineffective representation in the State Senate has cost us jobs. It’s also led to higher property taxes.
This year, our school districts received $1 million less than they were originally promised. Who made up the difference? You did, in the form of higher-than-needed property tax increases.
Now, Albany is even talking about cuts to school aid. I stood up and said I would not support mid-year school aid cuts. My opponent was silent.
On issue after issue, from gun rights to property taxes and jobs, downstate political interests are already gearing up to put their communities ahead of ours.
Throughout this campaign, I have said we need a strong, fresh voice that understands the needs of our region, and who has fresh ideas to change Albany, and change the way state government responds to our needs.
My ideas: cut the wasteful spending that has made ours the most expensive, and least efficient government in the country, say ‘no’ to higher taxes that will only drive more families and jobs out of our region, and stand up to the downstate interests who want to deprive us of our fair share.
This campaign has been a truly rewarding opportunity for me to make scores of new friends, listen to your concerns and strengthen my resolve to fight on your behalf.
To everyone I meet, I say I would be honored to have your support on Election Day. In return, I promise to work as hard as I know how to fight for our communities and help build a better future.
Please remember to vote on Tuesday, November 4.