Three Empty Seats
October 21, 2019 (via email)
Last Friday evening, the Greater New York Chamber of Commerce hosted a candidate forum for the upcoming elections at the Harrison Public Library. The forum was moderated by Stanley Kogelman, President of Delft Strategic Advisors and a former professor at SUNY Purchase. Harrison residents and town workers packed the Library auditorium. Following brief opening statements, Frank, Lauren, and Michael spent the next one and one-half hours fielding questions from the audience and laying out their vision for positive change in Harrison. Topics discussed included our heavy tax burden, the rapid pace of undirected development, diversity, water quality issues, and senior housing.
But in place of the Belmont Team were three empty seats. Candidate forums have a long tradition in Harrison. Voters deserve the opportunity to raise concerns and openly question candidate positions in a public setting. And they deserve the opportunity to put their candidates to the test head to head. The Belmont Team was repeatedly contacted and invited to participate. In the end, they declined. Frank Corvino, Chair of the Harrison Democrats states: “We asked them to give us three dates that would work for them. They did not provide any dates and told us they would not debate. When the forum at the library was arranged regardless, they asked to participate but then changed their minds and decided not to attend.”
It is increasingly clear that the Belmont Team has no vision for Harrison. With Mayor Belmont conducting most town business out of the public view in “executive session”, there is little tolerance for true public engagement and no apparent room for honest differences of opinion. Their refusal to participate in a public candidate forum is just more of the same.
On November 5th you can bring open government back to Harrison by voting for Frank Gordon for Mayor, and Lauren Leader and Michael Romita for Town Board. Or you can elect three empty seats.
Frank Gordon, Candidate for Mayor
Lauren Leader, Candidate for Town Board
Michael Romita, Candidate for Town Board