In New York’s 110th Assembly District, Republican Dave Feiden is trying to unseat fourth-term Democrat Phil Steck on Tuesday.
The 110th district includes Colonie, Niskayuna and part of Schenectady. The 61-year-old Steck says the state budget is the district's major concern.
"My district places great value on the success of public education. And the budget crisis is causing layoffs of teachers and general turmoil in the schools. We so we need to address the budget crisis, secondarily, local government depends on funding from the state for highways and things of that nature."
The Democrat says he has the fix:
"By reinstating the stock transfer tax which New York had from 1905 to 1981. It is harmless, it's a one quarter of 1% tax, and really only paid by those who are involved in day-trading activities."
Feiden, who is 65, is a Niskayuna native and owner of a photography business. He says he’s running because the Assembly is laden with "left-wing ideas."
"So I felt since the numbers were so skewed in the Assembly that they needed me to step in and run and take a seat so that we can make the Assembly more of an even playing field."
Feiden sees growth and crime as issues needing attention.
"One of the things that started to bother me in Colonie was the overbuilding, the overcrowding. We need to step back and have growth that's equal to the facilities, the infrastructure. And that's one of the reasons why I ran, am running. One of the other reasons is the violence in Albany County, Schenectady County, and also Troy. I mean, you see people smashing windows, burning down buildings, attacking the police. It's just, it's crazy. It's got to stop."
Steck says the stock transfer tax bill can shore up the in-the-red state budget, which in turn will address infrastructure needs. As for law and order...
"Colonie is one of the places in the Capital Region that people really do enjoy living in, feel very safe in, we have a very strong police force."
Feiden worries too many New Yorkers are pulling up roots.
"It's bothering me that people are leaving our state, there's got to be a way to reverse that. This is an incredibly beautiful state with a lot to offer. Very diverse."
Feiden makes his case for the seat:
" I have a lot to give. And I want to help people. I've had some dealings with our local government, which were very positive for me and for our community. And I want to continue to do that, that felt good to help and to take care of take care of some issues locally. And I want to continue that with my Assembly candidacy."
Steck says he is best suited to continue representing the 110th.
"Chances are the person who works hardest in the race is going to be the person that's going to work hardest for you in office. That's still true because of COVID. We're not doing door to door campaigning in the traditional sense and talking to people, but I am out every night, and we have a door hanger that gives my phone number if people want to reach me. I think the one thing you can say about Phil Steck is he certainly works as hard as possible.”