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Warren County Supervisors Running For State Assembly

Matt Simpson and Claudia Braymer
Matt Simpson/Friends of Claudia Braymer
Matt Simpson and Claudia Braymer

Two candidates have launched campaigns for New York’s 114th Assembly District, which includes all of Warren and Essex Counties, and portions of Saratoga and Washington Counties.

The district is currently represented by Republican Dan Stec, who announced in December he would run for the 45th State Senate seat. The 45th District is represented by longtime state lawmaker Republican Betty Little, who is retiring. 

At the same time, Republican Matt Simpson announced he would run for Stec’s seat. Simpson is the four-term Town Supervisor from Horicon and sits on the Warren County Board of Supervisors. He also is the current president of the Adirondack Association of Towns and Villages.

“I’ve had a great opportunity to be so involved at a much larger scale outside of my community outside the Adirondack Association of Towns and Villages, and working a lot of that time in Albany, it presented a great opportunity to continue that work that I had been doing all along,” said Simpson.

This week, another member of the Warren County Board announced a run for the 114th Assembly District: Democrat Claudia Braymer of Glens Falls.

“When I got a county supervisor position, I thought that I could be a more effective voice for the North Country down in Albany, given that the majority of the Assembly right now is Democrats,” said Braymer.

Braymer, an attorney now in her third term representing Glens Falls’ Ward 3, says she has had success working across the aisle on the majority Republican county board.

Braymer predicted the campaign will not see any “nasty digs” among the county board colleagues.

“I do have a working relationship with Matt and I’m going to stay focused on my race,” said Braymer.

Simpson feels similarly.

“We differ sometimes on opinions but we have the same concerns for the Adirondack Park and protecting our resource and sustainability in our communities,” said Simpson. 

Simpson said his number one concern and how it relates to the North Country region is high taxes.

“And it’s creating a chain-reaction of events. We’re losing residents, the demographics are changing, our schools are losing population, and our businesses are not thriving. So it’s a whole host of issues that fall under that high taxes,” said Simpson.

Braymer also is concerned with the upstate population decline. She said she’d like to focus on responsible development of affordable housing for seniors and the workforce.

“I think it’s really important to make that available so that we can try to start reversing the trends of people leaving the area or having to move to other places where they can have more affordable housing. If we can provide that here in the North Country, hopefully, we can keep people home,” said Braymer.

Braymer said she’s not afraid of running in an area that’s long been under Republican representation in Albany.

“I’m looking forward to getting out there and listening to the constituents, hearing from them and their neighbors, talking to our business owners, and really getting more understanding of all of the issues across the district that’s pretty vast geographically, but I think there is a lot that unites us,” said Braymer.

And Simpson is not deterred by the strong Democratic majority in the Assembly.

“I look forward to working in the Assembly as a minority member. I’m going to be focused on the issues, building relationships, and finding solutions on behalf of the people in the 114th Assembly District,” said Simpson.

Lucas Willard is a news reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011. He produces and hosts The Best of Our Knowledge and WAMC Listening Party.
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