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Essex forum low on comments, candidates

Only one candidate in each contested race at LWV event

A sample ballot for the Nov. 8 General Election in the town of Essex, through the Essex County Board of Elections website.

A sample ballot for the Nov. 8 General Election in the town of Essex, through the Essex County Board of Elections website.

— There was not much to discuss at the Meet the Candidates forum in Essex Oct. 26, presented by the League of women Voters of the Plattsburgh Area, because there was no one to discuss it with.

Town highway superintendent candidate David Murcary, Jr., and incumbent town supervisor Sharon Boisen faced questions from the 30 audience members assembled at the Essex Town Hall, but did so without their respective competition, James Morgan, Jr., and Frank Walls, present.

Both said that they might have had more to add to the night if their opponents had been there.

Walls did have a prepared statement which was read at the event, but stated that he was unable to attend.

“I decided to become a candidate for town supervisor because I think that with my 25 years of supervisory experience I can provide the leadership to help make out local government responsive to all Essex residents,” Walls said through his statement, adding that he would strive to do a number of things, including treating everyone equally and with no favoritism, using a team approach to government, exploring opportunities for shared services and working diligently and effectively on the Essex County Board of Supervisors.

Boisen said that she wanted to continue the work she had done since taking office in 2010.

“I ran for office in 2009 to improve local government,” Boisen said. “I have worked diligently with the town board to work on procedures to bring the town into compliance with the New York State Comptrollers Audit, and I will continue to maintain transparency and openness in government.”

Boisen also pointed at the nearly-completed sewer system as a success during her time in office, saying that the project came in on-time and under budget.

During the candidate introductions, a letter was read form Grace Drummond, an incumbent assessor, stating that she did not want the position even though she was on the ballot and asking people to vote instead for Patricia Gardner, who is running along with David Sayre for the two open positions on the board of assessors.

In the second half of the letter, which was read by LWV moderator Betty Ann King, Drummond voiced her support for Boisen. King said that she would have preferred to have Drummond read the letter herself, but that each candidate had a two-minute window to say whatever they wanted to.

“That is not part of our role, and we should have done something where she was the one who read that letter,” King said. “However, each candidate had two minutes to say whatever they wanted to, whether it was in person or through a letter submitted to the LWV.”

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