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Treadwell pledges to forego salary if elected

LAKE PLACID While most New Yorkers are looking for ways to make their paycheck go the extra mile, Sandy Treadwell (R,I,C, Lake Placid) has pledged to forego pay altogether. Treadwell, the Republican candidate for the 20th Congressional District, promised last week that if elected he would donate his entire salary to charitable organizations around the region. Its the right thing to do, Treadwell said. People are hurting economically right now, and to me, it just makes sense. The announcement came just days after Treadwell challenged incumbent Kirsten Gillibrand (D, Hudson) to return $6,000 in campaign contributions that she received from Lehman Brothers Holdings. Treadwell also renewed his call for all members of Congress to stop accepting donations from financial firms benefitting from the $700 billion bailout package. As states like New York struggle to make up for the lost revenue from Wall Street and taxpayers worry about the bills they will be receiving to pay for a $700 billion corporate bailout, it is wrong that elected officials like Ms. Gillibrand and so many others advance their campaigns with this money, he added. According to Treadwell, he would assemble a board of advisors to determine which organizations would receive funds from the donation of his salary. Currently, members of Congress are paid $169,000 for their services. Foregoing pay is nothing new for Treadwell. He opted out of a paycheck while serving as the chairman of the state Republican Party. However, he did receive pay as Secretary of State during George Patakis tenure as governor. Treadwell has used $2.5 million of his own money for his campaign thus far, thanks in large part to his grandfathers General Electric investments. A number of other prominent New York politicians also donate their salaries to charitable causes. New York Citys Independent Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, accepts only one dollar a year. Assemblyman Bob Reilly, a Democrat from Colonie, donates his pay as well. Ian McGaughey, a Democratic candidate in the 112th Assembly District, has also pledged to donate his salary. A spokesperson for the Gillibrand campaign declined to comment on Treadwells pledge, but did note that the Democratic candidate voted no two years in a row regarding a congressional pay raise. The raise passed this year, and Gillibrand donated the extra money to the Double H Ranch a Lake Luzerne, NY camp for children with serious medical illness and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundations regional chapter.

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