City Council District 43 - General Election 2013

  
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Endorsed Candidate - John Quaglione (R,C, I) 
Age: 34 Occupation: Aide, NYS Senator Martin Golden
Education: American University (BA)

John Quaglione grew up in District 43 and has worked on various community projects as an aide to State Senator Martin Golden. He is running because he believes that his district has been left behind, particularly as it relates to providing needed funding to the community, and what he believes is an imbalance in the ratio of taxes paid to services delivered. Regarding reform issues, Quaglione supports ensuring that candidates cannot use public matching funds to pay for the services of campaign consultants who are also registered lobbyists. He supports reforming the City Council, and has a sophisticated plan for restructuring the City Council’s committees, believing that certain committees should be combined where synergies would allow members to better understand the overlapping jurisdiction of city agencies. Quaglione also supports instant runoff voting to save taxpayer resources. Regarding community boards and the borough presidents, he supports eliminating borough presidents and restructuring community boards so that they are supported through local council offices, while still holding community meetings and having an independent staff member devoted to land use. Regarding police reform, while he is hesitant to change the way stop, question and frisk is conducted, he supports giving the Civilian Complaint Review Board greater teeth so that police officers think twice before abusing their authority. On local issues, Quaglione opposes the creation of the Gravesend Bay waste transfer station, supports weekend express bus service return, and would seek to create more middle school classrooms and a second senior housing facility in order to target these two growing populations. Citizens Union was impressed by Quaglione’s specificity with regard to the needs he identified in the district and ways to address them, as well as his thoughtful understanding of reform issues and city government structure, and therefore endorses his candidacy for office.

 

  
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  Vincent Gentile (D, WF)
Age: 54 Occupation: Member, New York City Council
Education: Cornell University (BA); Fordham University School of Law (JD)

Vincent Gentile is running for re-election, having served in the City Council since 2003. He was previously a state senator from 1997 to 2002, and an Assistant District Attorney. Gentile stated that he would seize the opportunity of a new administration to bring improvements to his community. If re-elected, he would be the most senior member of the City Council, and believes that this clout would enable him to deliver more to his constituents. Regarding reform issues, Gentile supports Citizens Union’s agenda, believing that rules reforms are needed to ensure that members of the City Council are better able to move legislation forward. He also believes that chairs of committees should be able to hire their own staff, and that member items should be divided more equitably and based on need. Regarding election reform, he believes that the recount procedure should be improved, and cited his own election in 2003 as an example of the unnecessary delays that have occurred. On local issues, Gentile believes that the “gotcha” mentality of city regulatory agencies must be improved so that the focus is on health and safety rather than revenue generation. He would also focus on improving transit options, such as continuing the ferry service from Bay Ridge that has been implemented during construction on the R train. He also supports increasing the number of police officers to improve public safety. While Citizens Union believes that Gentile has been a sincere advocate for his community, his opponent provided more specificity in articulating his plans for the district, and demonstrated a more thoughtful approach regarding reform issues.
 
The following candidate was not scheduled for an interview by Citizens Union: 
Patrick Dwyer (G)