Jonathan Kostakopoulos, Republican/Working Families/Stop de Blasio
What three things do you most want to get done in the state legislature during the next two years?
A) Affordable housing: I will work with private developers to allocate more units for seniors, veterans, and middle-income families, by giving the developers incentives.
B) Education: I’m for charter schools; for tax credits for working parents who send their children to parochial and private schools; and we need to get the proper allocation of pre-K seats for the District. We are the “Capital of the World,” and we should have better education accessible to our children.
C) Quality of life: I want our streets to be safe, clean, and plowed. We need to reduce homelessness by bringing new thinking to the problem and by recognizing that the problem is multi-faceted. I will bring the private and public sectors together to effectively address the problem. I’ll also fight to improve bus and subway services, and I will get and publicize a report of accountability of the 2nd Avenue Subway Line.
Do you think you will be able to work with the opposition party? How?
I work well with people. As a minority member of the Assembly, I will push for term limits and for real reform to end the culture of corruption. You cannot change the culture without changing the people. New Yorkers deserve nothing less.
What is your favorite TV show, and why?
This is tough to narrow down to one show, but the journalist in me loves Charlie Rose. He’s informative, interesting, and asks great questions — he can also be funny at times.
Rebecca A. Seawright, Democrat/Working Families
I will vigorously work to build on my successes in obtaining passage of 10 bills during my first state legislative session. My agenda will include improving the quality of life in our community, strengthening ethics reform, and securing a more equitable state budget. I will maintain my ongoing practice of consulting with constituents on their ideas — which often generates the basis for legislation. I will continue to fight for enactment of the NYC campaign finance system and full financial disclosure for state office holders. My strong advocacy for senior citizens will include exemption from mandatory jury service for those persons over the age of 70. Our valued public schools and colleges need resources to assure lower class size, state support for collective bargaining agreements, and critical building maintenance. Lastly, we must codify Roe v. Wade in the state constitution to ensure that women in NY will never have their reproductive rights infringed upon.
I already work with the “opposition” party, AKA Republicans, in the State Senate, such as Senator Marty Golden, Brooklyn, to obtain successful passage of legislation. I work with Republicans in both houses in the bi-partisan Women’s Reproductive Rights Caucus on freedom of choice. “Opposition” is the right word because we can accomplish much more in the state budget and for our neighborhoods by ensuring that progressive Democrats like Senator Liz Krueger are in the majority — by electing reform-minded Democrats. At present, the NYS Assembly Democrats fight the hardest for NYC needs. While we must work together for the benefit of all state residents so taxpayers are not shortchanged, we have the opportunity to choose our representation when elections come around, like on Nov. 8. We should add to and strengthen Democratic voices at all levels on the ballot so we are better positioned to work with the “Opposition”, post-election. What is your favorite TV show, and why?
“60 Minutes.” After almost 50 years, this broadcast has a fabulous track record of compelling stories, interviews, and investigative reports. This was a hard choice. In our family household, if it is Sunday morning, it is “Meet the Press”. Both are reminders of the vitality of the First Amendment. Let me also add that with a teenager and a college student in the home, when entertainment or sporting events take place during these shows, that is when the record button comes in handy!