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The Telegram
  • 3 compete for District 17 seat in Herkimer Co.

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  • Incumbent Bruce Weakley, a Republican, will face a challenge from Democrat David Maxwell and Green Party candidate Christine Shahin for the District 17 seat on the Herkimer County Legislature.
    The district includes the town of Newport and parts of the town of Russia.
    Bruce Weakley
    Weakley has been a Herkimer County legislator for 10 years and is the owner and operator of Weakley Sand & Gravel.
    He is also the assessor for the town of Russia.
    Weakley has been endorsed by UMWA Local 717, IBEW Local 43 and the AFL-CIO Labor Council.
    Statement: We need to get the new jail built and start saving the taxpayers money, which we are wasting in boarding out prisoners to other counties along with transportation costs.
    We also need to stay focused on bringing in more companies along with jobs to Herkimer County.
    Over my past 10 years, our fiscal management has kept Herkimer County at zero debt. We have also had our bond rating increased to Aa3, which is the highest rating a municipality can achieve. This all has been accomplished while keeping the tax rate flat.
    Christine Shahin
    Shahin has lived in Newport for 30 years and her children attended and contributed to West Canada Valley Central School.
    The owner of Faces of Astarte: Organic Beauty, Shahin is a human rights activist and served on local and international boards on numerous issues. She authored a weekly column for The Evening Telegram, “Environment Watch,” and was a delegate to the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2002.
    Statement: Political polarization paralyzes possibilities. As Green Party Presidential Candidate Jill Stein stated, “The politics of fear has delivered everything we were afraid of. We need to replace the politics of fear with the politics of courage.”
    It is time for Green voices to be on local boards and Legislatures. As a local business owner, all that we create comes from our natural resources — they are our money in the bank, but there is no overdraft protection for them. As a founding member of the New York State Labor and Environment Network, there is no jobs versus environment, there is only jobs and the environment.
    For too long this voice has been ridiculed as “idealistic” and silenced; what is idealistic is to think that we can continue to do what we do and get different results.
    I am honored if you choose me on Nov. 5.
    Maxwell did not respond to a request for information.
    He is the owner of Imperial Games in Herkimer.

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