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Candidates are starting to launch bids to replace New York state Assemblymember Fahy

State Assemblymember Pat Fahy, a Democrat from the 109th district, praised the Grand Street initiative and its focus on the arts at a ribbon cutting Wednesday.
Dave Lucas
State Assemblymember Pat Fahy, a Democrat from the 109th district, addresses a gathering at the Grand Street initiative in Albany.

The race is on to replace New York state Assemblywoman Pat Fahy of the 109th District, now running for state Senate.

Fahy is running to replace retiring 14-term Senator Neil Breslin in the 46th District. Fahy says she "somewhat expected" her Assembly seat would trigger "tremendous interest" among fellow Democrats in Albany.

Fahy, who has been in the Assembly since 2013, says she’s staying out of it. "I'm going to do what my predecessor Jack McEneny did before me in 2012. And that is just stay out of this, at this point," said Fahy. "I ran a six-way primary to win office in 2012. And I was very grateful that Jack McEneny stayed out of the race at the time, because I might not be here otherwise."

Candidates are beginning to emerge. Albany Common Councilor Owusu Anane, a Democrat from Ward 10, says his experience in Albany and as a public school teacher in North Greenbush qualifies him to become the first person of color to represent the district, which includes New Scotland, Albany, and parts of Guilderland.

"You know, we think about, you know, my background, particularly as a public school educator, and a small business owner, and also a council member, I believe that this blend of experienced uniquely equips me to understand the complexity of our district, and the impact state policy has on everyday lives," said Anane. "One of the things I want to do and several things I want to focus on, is making sure that our region is more affordable, improving public safety, aid and our local government and tackling the growing threat of climate change. And that's some of the issues that I would like to see address. I believe that as a party, as Democrats, we need more diversity in our state delegation. Never has a person of color represented Albany County in the state legislature."

Dustin Reidy is serving his first term in the Albany County Legislature, representing the 30th District, which covers a portion of Guilderland. On the cusp of making his official campaign announcement, Reidy says he's poised to take the baton from Fahy.

"Pat has been a huge advocate for issues like climate change, supporting small businesses, and, you know, her vision to transform 787, for example, all of these things, I will be taking up on the work that she is working on currently," said Reidy. "But, you know, there are just there are many issues that affect everyone in the one on ones district, when it comes to finding more creative solutions, to get more affordable housing here in the district and better access to housing." 

Jobs and gun violence also rank high on Reidy's to-do list. 108th district Assembly Member John McDonald has worked on issues side-by-side with Fahy for the past 12 years. He welcomes all who decide to run for her seat.

"It's not easy to put yourself out there," McDonald said. "You open yourself up for a great opportunity, but also an opportunity for people to take a closer look at you. And you know, I wish all the candidates very well, it's going to be a very hotly contested race. I recall back 14 years ago, when I ran for the assembly, I was fortunate it was only a two-person race, whereas Pat ran in a six-person race, and that's consistent with the many talented individuals living in the city of Albany who are interested in that position, and a few that are out."


Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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