MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- Though the League of Women Voters forum on Wednesday focused on several different races, the conversation centered on the state of taxes.
The debate was held on Oct. 9 at the Mamaroneck Town Center and featured candidates for District 7 county legislator Catherine Parker (D) and John Verni (R); for mayor of the village of Mamaroneck Clark Neuringer (D) and incumbent Mayor Rosenblum; for Mamaroneck Board of Trustee Kerry Stein (D) and Louis Santoro (R).
Each candidate emphasized taxes as a major issue within Mamaroneck, and addressed the question of how to increase and maintain services without raising taxes.
Parker, of Rye, said one of the biggest factors is unfunded mandates like Medicaid.
"Property taxes were not meant to pay for Medicaid. We are one of the only states in the union that deals with Medicaid on a county level," she said.
Parker's solution would be to invest in alternate energy, and cut unnecessary administrative assistant jobs which "cost the county $5.2 million a year."
Verni, of New Rochelle, said his solution would be to continue to invest in shared services, cut extraneous government jobs, reform procurement policies and invest in energy service contracts.
"We need to reduce the size of county government. The county government is way too big," he said.
Neuringer (D) and Rosenblum (R), candidates for village mayor, echoed similar beliefs.
"The most critical issue facing Mamaroneck is that the impact of taxes threatens our diversity," Neuringer (D) said. He added that he felt reinstating a village attorney was necessary to navigate taxes.
Rosenblum (R) said he has worked to reduce taxes, and has by .035-percent, by cutting extraneous jobs - including that of village attorney which saved the town $125,000 in the first year.
Stein (D) and Santoro (R) exchanged similar comments, along with discussing their visions for working as a bipartisan unit with the rest of the board.
Additionally, uncontested candidates for positions such as Nancy Seligson for Town Supervisor, Jaine Elkind Eney and Ernie Odierna were able to make statements.
The forum was moderated by former Rivertowns league president Lindsay Feinberg of Hastings-on-Hudson.