Assembly District 76 - Democratic Primary 2010
(photo from NYS Assembly website)
PETER RIVERA – DEM
Peter Rivera's Candidate Questionnaire
Age: 62 Occupation: Member, New York State Assembly
Education: Pace College (BA); St. John's Law School (JD)
Assembly website: http://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/?ad=076
Peter Rivera has an extensive background in politics dating back to when he was first elected to the Assembly in 1992. Rivera, who received Citizens Union’s endorsement in the 2008 general election, agrees with Citizens Union’s position supporting the establishment of an independent redistricting commission, but opposes the organization’s positions on several other issues such as making it easier for candidates to appear on the ballot by lowering signature requirements, and restricting campaign contributions from registered lobbyists and those who do business with the state. Rivera stated that his overall top priorities, if reelected, will be addressing issues related to education, crime, and redistricting. Assemblymember Rivera cites establishing the position of New York State Director of Diversity and founding a Bronx college fair that attracts 7,000 students as some of his greatest accomplishments while in office. Though Citizens Union has concerns about his use of campaign contributions for out-of-state travel expenditures, which Rivera believes is necessary being a national Hispanic political leader, Citizens Union acknowledges his ability to deliver for his district and admires his overall record as a legislator. Therefore, we again prefer Peter Rivera in this race.
(photo from luissepulvedaforassembly.com)
LUIS SEPULVEDA – DEM
Luis Sepulveda's Candidate Questionnaire
Age: 46 Occupation: Attorney and Adjunct Professor at Mercy College
Education: BA (name of degree-granting institution not provided); JD (name of degree-granting institution not provided)
Campaign website: http://luissepulvedaforassembly.com
Luis Sepulveda, an attorney and newcomer to politics, is challenging incumbent Peter Rivera in the 76th Assembly district. Sepulveda stated that he decided to run when his grandmother was sick and the incumbent, Assemblymember Peter Rivera, opposed a prescription drug bill while receiving contributions from the pharmaceutical industry. Sepulveda is committed to a grassroots campaign, refusing donations from special interests, and testified that he knocked on 17,000 doors by the end of July. On reform issues, he supports an independent redistricting commission, noting how the current process unduly favors incumbents. His reform priorities include initiating budget reform and promoting openness in how the government operates. On policy issues unrelated to reform, he does not differ vastly from Assemblymember Rivera; both are pro-choice and support same-sex marriage. If elected, Sepulveda hopes to aid his district by fostering economic development in Parkchester and by ensuring there is halal food in schools to accommodate the growing population of Bangladeshi students. He also will work to restore bus lines and senior center funding, both of which have been recently cut. Citizens Union commends Sepulveda’s commitment to reform and his dedication to his district. We question, however, whether Sepulveda could match the incumbent’s positive contributions to his district, despite his favorable positions on reform-related issues.