Education: Syracuse University (BA); CUNY (degree not reported)
Toby Ann Stavisky has been a state senator since 1999. She is proud of her record of accomplishment and is running in a newly created district that comprises 60 percent of her former district. She cites her experience and knowledge of the issues as distinguishing her from her competitors. On reform issues, Stavisky is a reluctant supporter of second passage of the constitutional amendment to implement redistricting reform. She believes the amendment should have reformed redistricting further. Stavisky also supports Citizens Union’s positions on campaign finance reform and wants to create a more ethical climate in Albany by strengthening penalties for misconduct. Stavisky generally supports making it easier to vote but has concerns about fraudulently submitted voter registration forms. Beyond reform issues, Stavisky will focus on increasing the minimum wage, passing the DREAM Act, reversing cuts to higher education and creating jobs for the community. She supports Mayor Bloomberg’s proposal related to Willets Point and is still forming a position on a Major League Soccer stadium in Flushing Meadows. She believes she is best suited to serve the diverse district, noting her support from elected Asian-American officials including her former opponent. Although a capable legislator who has earned CU’s support in the past, Stavisky’s equivocal support for the constitutional amendment to reform redistricting prevents us from supporting her candidacy.
J.D. KIM – REP, CON Age:39 Occupation: Attorney Education: BA (name of degree-granting institution not provided); JD (name of degree-granting institution not provided)
J.D. Kim is currently an attorney. He believes his background working with a diversity of ethnic groups will allow him to build bridges between the diverse populations in the district and tap into the economic engine that is Flushing. Kim acknowledges that he needs to examine reform issues more closely but identified the petitioning process as a major obstacle for newcomers to running for political office. Kim believes that petitioning does not accurately reflect support in the community noting the reluctance of some ethnic groups to sign petitions because of their unfamiliarity with the process. Kim agrees that there needs to be independent redistricting and would vote for the constitutional amendment to create it. He also supports in principle a state campaign finance system with public matching funds based on the New York City model but believes it can be implemented more effectively. Kim is primarily focused on creating jobs and growing the economy but did not articulate a plan to achieve those goals. Citizens Union believes Kim brings a thoughtful approach to issues but lacks depth of knowledge or a vision for accomplishing reform.