Gotham Gazette Gotham Gazette is an online publication covering New York policy and politics as well as news on public safety, transportation, education, finance and more. http://www.gothamgazette.com/component/tags/tag/tremaine-wright 2017-10-18T20:18:19+00:00 Webmaster webmaster@gothamgazette.com Adjusting to Albany: Meet NYC’s New Class of State Legislators 2017-03-19T04:00:00+00:00 2017-03-19T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=6818:adjusting-to-albany-meet-nyc-s-new-class-of-state-legislators Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/legislators/nyscapitolbuilding2.jpg" alt="nyscapitolbuilding2" width="600" height="456" /></p> <p>photo via @NYSCapitolTours</p> <hr /> <p dir="ltr">While the ethics trainings and orientation for new state legislators may have evolved over the years, one thing has remained constant: the daunting task of navigating the Capitol’s maze-like corridors during one’s first weeks of work in Albany.</p> <p dir="ltr">Orientation provides some roadmap to Albany’s byzantine legislative processes, including workshops in drafting bills, organizing a press conference, and conducting research, and legislative staffers are provided for support, but it can take a few weeks, if not months, for newly minted politicians to fully acclimate to life as a state lawmaker.</p> <p dir="ltr">In fact, much of the training happens on the job, according Assemblymember Tom McKevitt, who oversees the trainings for incoming Assembly members in the chamber’s Republican minority.</p> <p dir="ltr">“For many people they are coming to a different part of the state, they are leaving their families, leaving their hometowns, to come to a very different place,” said McKevitt, who represents part of Long Island, and has served in the Assembly for just over a decade. “New York State government is a massive operation. It really is. So we try to give them as much knowledge as possible and give them as much resources as possible to get them as productive a start to their legislative careers.”</p> <p dir="ltr">All new legislators in the Senate and the Assembly receive mandated training when they begin their legislative careers in Albany. In addition, each party conference provides training, as McKevitt indicated for the Assembly minority.</p> <p>
NEW LEGISLATORS

* AM Yuh-Line Niou
* Sen. Jamaal Bailey
* AM Robert Carroll
* AM Carmen De La Rosa
* AM Brian Barnwell
* AM Tremaine Wright
* AM Stacey Pheffer Amato
* Sen. Marisol Alcantara
* AM Clyde Vanel
* AM Inez Dickens
</p> <p dir="ltr">This year, there are 10 new state lawmakers from New York City, joining the 150-seat Assembly, which is dominated by Democrats, and the 63-seat Senate, which is narrowly controlled by Republicans. All of the new reps from the city are Democrats -- there are only a handful of New York City Republicans in the Legislature altogether, mostly from Staten Island.</p> <p dir="ltr">Gotham Gazette began interviewing each of those 10 new members in February to gauge how they are adjusting to life in the state Legislature, which is notoriously dysfunctional and insulated, and has seen its share of corruption scandals in recent years.</p> <p dir="ltr">While the first weeks of the legislative calendar leading up to one-house budgets in March are always fairly intense for new legislators, this year appears to have been more so. As with other state capitals and city halls around the country, the inauguration of President Donald Trump, followed by the unconventional president’s chaotic first two months in office, have cast a long shadow over governing in New York.</p> <p dir="ltr">As the Trump administration rushes to follow through on campaign promises to scale back reproductive rights, repeal the Affordable Care Act, and ban immigrants from select countries, many legislators, especially Democrats, are feeling more uncertainty and a greater sense of urgency. Both come in part from their constituents -- New Yorkers who overwhelmingly voted for Hillary Clinton in November.</p> <p dir="ltr">Several incoming lawmakers hailing from the five boroughs are facing challenging political climates in their districts and given local political dynamics. Yuh-Line Niou, now representing Lower Manhattan’s 65th Assembly District, must deliver for a constituency accustomed to receiving an exceptionally high level of resources given that the seat had been held for decades by (now convicted) former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.</p> <p>The 31st Senate District’s new representative, Marisol Alcantara, is a member of the Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference (IDC), at a time when the breakaway group of Democrats that forms a coalition majority with Republicans is facing some significant backlash. Meanwhile, Senator Jamaal Bailey, of the 36th Senate District, is joining the mainline Senate Democratic Conference that is struggling in the minority.</p> <p>To begin our series on new city-based state legislators, Gotham Gazette spoke with Niou, Bailey, and Brooklyn Assemblymember Robert Carroll. Read their interviews through the links below, and stay tuned for our interviews with the seven other new lawmakers from the five boroughs.&nbsp;</p> <p>
yuh line niou2
Yuh-Line Niou

Assemblymember for the 65th District
Lower Manhattan
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“This is a constituency that literally had the most service and then almost no service for a period of time. It’s been a shock to the system.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou


</p> <p>
jamaal bailey
Jamaal Bailey

State Senator for the 36th District
Parts of the Bronx and Mount Vernon
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“But a lot of the preparation, it just comes in real-time. Just seeing the bill and you have to vote on it.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Senator Jamaal Bailey


</p> <p>
robert carroll 2
Robert Carroll

Assembly Member for 44th District
Brooklyn (Windsor Terrace, Kensington, Park Slope, Flatbush)
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“I think if you are going to be in politics, you have to understand that you’re not going to win every fight, and you have to be ready to stay in the arena.” 
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assembly Member Robert Carroll


</p> <p>
Carmen for assembly
Carmen De La Rosa

Assembly Member for 72nd District
Manhattan (Harlem, Inwood, Hamilton Heights, and Washington Heights)
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“It’s definitely a great place to be, coming from the City Council, it’s sort of government on a larger scale, so it’s a welcome challenge for me.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Carmen De La Rosa


</p> <p>
Brian Bramwell
Brian Barnwell

Assembly member for the 30th District
Parts of Astoria, Long Island City, Maspeth, Middle Village, and Woodside
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat
“The budget process was certainly long, but I don’t have a problem with that. In my opinion, it’s better to negotiate and negotiate and negotiate, instead of just doing the deal for the sake of doing a deal.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Brian Barnwell


</p> <p><em><strong>Coming soon, interviews with:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li>Assemblymember Tremaine Wright</li> <li>Assemblymember Stacey Pheffer Amato</li> <li>Senator Marisol Alacantra</li> <li>Assemblymember Clyde Vanel</li> <li>Assemblymember Inez Dickens</li> </ul> <p>

***
by Rachel Silberstein, State government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
<p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2017/legislators/nyscapitolbuilding2.jpg" alt="nyscapitolbuilding2" width="600" height="456" /></p> <p>photo via @NYSCapitolTours</p> <hr /> <p dir="ltr">While the ethics trainings and orientation for new state legislators may have evolved over the years, one thing has remained constant: the daunting task of navigating the Capitol’s maze-like corridors during one’s first weeks of work in Albany.</p> <p dir="ltr">Orientation provides some roadmap to Albany’s byzantine legislative processes, including workshops in drafting bills, organizing a press conference, and conducting research, and legislative staffers are provided for support, but it can take a few weeks, if not months, for newly minted politicians to fully acclimate to life as a state lawmaker.</p> <p dir="ltr">In fact, much of the training happens on the job, according Assemblymember Tom McKevitt, who oversees the trainings for incoming Assembly members in the chamber’s Republican minority.</p> <p dir="ltr">“For many people they are coming to a different part of the state, they are leaving their families, leaving their hometowns, to come to a very different place,” said McKevitt, who represents part of Long Island, and has served in the Assembly for just over a decade. “New York State government is a massive operation. It really is. So we try to give them as much knowledge as possible and give them as much resources as possible to get them as productive a start to their legislative careers.”</p> <p dir="ltr">All new legislators in the Senate and the Assembly receive mandated training when they begin their legislative careers in Albany. In addition, each party conference provides training, as McKevitt indicated for the Assembly minority.</p> <p>
NEW LEGISLATORS

* AM Yuh-Line Niou
* Sen. Jamaal Bailey
* AM Robert Carroll
* AM Carmen De La Rosa
* AM Brian Barnwell
* AM Tremaine Wright
* AM Stacey Pheffer Amato
* Sen. Marisol Alcantara
* AM Clyde Vanel
* AM Inez Dickens
</p> <p dir="ltr">This year, there are 10 new state lawmakers from New York City, joining the 150-seat Assembly, which is dominated by Democrats, and the 63-seat Senate, which is narrowly controlled by Republicans. All of the new reps from the city are Democrats -- there are only a handful of New York City Republicans in the Legislature altogether, mostly from Staten Island.</p> <p dir="ltr">Gotham Gazette began interviewing each of those 10 new members in February to gauge how they are adjusting to life in the state Legislature, which is notoriously dysfunctional and insulated, and has seen its share of corruption scandals in recent years.</p> <p dir="ltr">While the first weeks of the legislative calendar leading up to one-house budgets in March are always fairly intense for new legislators, this year appears to have been more so. As with other state capitals and city halls around the country, the inauguration of President Donald Trump, followed by the unconventional president’s chaotic first two months in office, have cast a long shadow over governing in New York.</p> <p dir="ltr">As the Trump administration rushes to follow through on campaign promises to scale back reproductive rights, repeal the Affordable Care Act, and ban immigrants from select countries, many legislators, especially Democrats, are feeling more uncertainty and a greater sense of urgency. Both come in part from their constituents -- New Yorkers who overwhelmingly voted for Hillary Clinton in November.</p> <p dir="ltr">Several incoming lawmakers hailing from the five boroughs are facing challenging political climates in their districts and given local political dynamics. Yuh-Line Niou, now representing Lower Manhattan’s 65th Assembly District, must deliver for a constituency accustomed to receiving an exceptionally high level of resources given that the seat had been held for decades by (now convicted) former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.</p> <p>The 31st Senate District’s new representative, Marisol Alcantara, is a member of the Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference (IDC), at a time when the breakaway group of Democrats that forms a coalition majority with Republicans is facing some significant backlash. Meanwhile, Senator Jamaal Bailey, of the 36th Senate District, is joining the mainline Senate Democratic Conference that is struggling in the minority.</p> <p>To begin our series on new city-based state legislators, Gotham Gazette spoke with Niou, Bailey, and Brooklyn Assemblymember Robert Carroll. Read their interviews through the links below, and stay tuned for our interviews with the seven other new lawmakers from the five boroughs.&nbsp;</p> <p>
yuh line niou2
Yuh-Line Niou

Assemblymember for the 65th District
Lower Manhattan
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“This is a constituency that literally had the most service and then almost no service for a period of time. It’s been a shock to the system.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou


</p> <p>
jamaal bailey
Jamaal Bailey

State Senator for the 36th District
Parts of the Bronx and Mount Vernon
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“But a lot of the preparation, it just comes in real-time. Just seeing the bill and you have to vote on it.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Senator Jamaal Bailey


</p> <p>
robert carroll 2
Robert Carroll

Assembly Member for 44th District
Brooklyn (Windsor Terrace, Kensington, Park Slope, Flatbush)
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“I think if you are going to be in politics, you have to understand that you’re not going to win every fight, and you have to be ready to stay in the arena.” 
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assembly Member Robert Carroll


</p> <p>
Carmen for assembly
Carmen De La Rosa

Assembly Member for 72nd District
Manhattan (Harlem, Inwood, Hamilton Heights, and Washington Heights)
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat & Working Families Party
“It’s definitely a great place to be, coming from the City Council, it’s sort of government on a larger scale, so it’s a welcome challenge for me.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Carmen De La Rosa


</p> <p>
Brian Bramwell
Brian Barnwell

Assembly member for the 30th District
Parts of Astoria, Long Island City, Maspeth, Middle Village, and Woodside
Elected 2016; took office 2017
Democrat
“The budget process was certainly long, but I don’t have a problem with that. In my opinion, it’s better to negotiate and negotiate and negotiate, instead of just doing the deal for the sake of doing a deal.”
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW with Assemblymember Brian Barnwell


</p> <p><em><strong>Coming soon, interviews with:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li>Assemblymember Tremaine Wright</li> <li>Assemblymember Stacey Pheffer Amato</li> <li>Senator Marisol Alacantra</li> <li>Assemblymember Clyde Vanel</li> <li>Assemblymember Inez Dickens</li> </ul> <p>

***
by Rachel Silberstein, State government reporter, Gotham Gazette
     

Read more by this writer.

</p>
Assembly Candidates Turn Down Televised Debates 2016-09-08T04:00:00+00:00 2016-09-08T04:00:00+00:00 http://www.gothamgazette.com/?id=6519:assembly-candidates-turn-down-televised-debates Ben Max <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2014/03/Errol_No_Debate.png" alt="Errol No Debate" width="600" height="332" /></p> <p>NY1 Anchor Errol Louis (NY1 screenshot)</p> <hr /> <p>New York City&rsquo;s premiere political television news show, NY1&rsquo;s Inside City Hall, has been hosting candidate debates in the weeks leading up to <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/election-coverage/2016-elections" target="_blank">the September 13 state legislative primaries</a>, as it has ahead of past elections.</p> <p>NY1 has been home to many debates over the years, including earlier this year, when it hosted seven Democratic candidates seeking to replace retiring Rep. Charles Rangel and the NY1-CNN presidential primary debate between Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.</p> <p>Moving toward the upcoming primaries for New York State Assembly and Senate, the network has, as of Thursday evening&rsquo;s Inside City Hall program, hosted candidates from six primaries. Two of those, however, were solo candidate interviews when the second person running in each of two races declined NY1&rsquo;s debate invitation.</p> <p>On Thursday&rsquo;s Inside City Hall, host Errol Louis moderated a four-candidate <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--replacing-espaillat.html" target="_blank">debate</a> in the 31st state Senate District race. He also held two separate individual interviews with candidates: incumbent Assembly Member Latrice Walker <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--no-debate-in-brooklyn-s-55th.html?cid=twitter_InsideCityHall" target="_blank">spoke with Louis</a> when her challenger, current City Council Member Darlene Mealy, declined to appear for a debate; and Tremaine Wright <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--no-debate-in-brooklyn-s-56th.html?cid=twitter_InsideCityHall" target="_blank">spoke with Louis</a> when Karen Cherry, her competitor for the 56th Assembly District seat, which is being vacated by the long-term incumbent, opted not to appear.</p> <p>When an Inside City Hall producer emailed the show&rsquo;s press list to advise of Thursday night&rsquo;s program line-up, it was noted that Mealy and Cherry had declined to accept debate invitations. Gotham Gazette attempted to reach Mealy through her City Council office, to no avail, despite talking with an aide. A spokesperson for Cherry indicated that the candidate had a scheduling conflict.</p> <p>&ldquo;Those were the only two candidates this cycle who declined to attend. We held four debates (Senate District 10, Senate District 33, Senate District 31 and Assembly District 46) in addition to these two,&rdquo; said said Bob Hardt, NY1 political director, in a statement to Gotham Gazette. &ldquo;Generally, we try to give ample time before a debate but if space opens up at the last minute, we occasionally try to put together a debate within days in the interest of providing a service to our audience. In the case of the Mealy-Walker race, we reached out to both campaigns in the middle of August. In the case of the Cherry-Wright race, we reached out to both campaigns last week and Wright accepted but Cherry declined, indicating a desire to stay in the district.&ldquo;</p> <p>In local elections, an invitation to debate on NY1 is often candidates&rsquo; only opportunity to speak on television and reach a broader audience than typical campaigning allows. Inside City Hall is also watched by political insiders, the civic-minded public, and many New Yorkers interested in local political news. Debates offer candidates an opportunity for a performance to share by video afterward as well.</p> <p>Cherry&rsquo;s campaign communications director, Tony Herbert, told Gotham Gazette that the candidate was &ldquo;meeting with seniors and other people in the community&rdquo; at the time of the debate taping on Thursday. &ldquo;The option that was given was a conflict with her schedule,&rdquo; Herbert said. &ldquo;There was no other option. We would&rsquo;ve loved to have done it, but we couldn&rsquo;t meet that timeframe.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;We think she&rsquo;s gonna do well,&rdquo; he added. &ldquo;But we can&rsquo;t take anything for granted. We&rsquo;ve gotta be out there with constituents.&rdquo;</p> <p>In Wright&rsquo;s interview with Louis, the candidate discussed her pursuit of the Brooklyn Assembly seat, including her resume, which includes being a small business owner and chair of the local community board in Bedford-Stuyvesant.</p> <p>Wright said she wants to move to the Assembly in order to be a part of the budget process, provide legislative oversight, and bring resources back to her district. She did not mention the absence of her opponent, but Inside City Hall did have a graphic showing a map of the district with &ldquo;No Debate&rdquo; written above it.</p> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2014/03/AM_Walker.png" alt="AM Walker" width="250" height="151" style="margin: 5px; float: left;" />Assembly Member Walker&rsquo;s primary challenger in the 55th Assembly District, also in Brooklyn, City Council Member Darlene Mealy, is not known as an especially active Council member. Mealy, who is term-limited out of the Council at the end of 2017, is challenging Assembly Member Walker in an attempt to move to the state Legislature.</p> <p>The Council member&rsquo;s campaign committee has no clear contact information listed with the Board of Elections. An aide in her Council office did not make her available for an interview or send a statement explaining Mealy&rsquo;s decision not to debate on NY1.</p> <p>In Walker&rsquo;s NY1 interview, the short-term incumbent (pictured) explained her roots in her district and what she described as the privilege of representing her community in Albany. She touted bringing millions of dollars back to the district for a hospital and NYCHA repairs and described introducing bills aimed at expanding voting rights and registration. The Assembly member also explained how she is attempting to restore her constituents&rsquo; trust in government after her predecessor wound up in prison on corruption charges.</p> <p>While Louis, the Inside City Hall anchor, did lament the absence of Mealy, Walker did not discuss her opponent. The interview also featured a NY1 map of the district and the "No Debate" headline.</p> <p>State legislative primaries are Tuesday, September 13.</p> <p>***<br />by William Fowler and Ben Max, with reporting from Samar Khurshid<br /><a href="https://twitter.com/GothamGazette" target="_blank">@GothamGazette</a></p> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2014/03/Errol_No_Debate.png" alt="Errol No Debate" width="600" height="332" /></p> <p>NY1 Anchor Errol Louis (NY1 screenshot)</p> <hr /> <p>New York City&rsquo;s premiere political television news show, NY1&rsquo;s Inside City Hall, has been hosting candidate debates in the weeks leading up to <a href="http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/election-coverage/2016-elections" target="_blank">the September 13 state legislative primaries</a>, as it has ahead of past elections.</p> <p>NY1 has been home to many debates over the years, including earlier this year, when it hosted seven Democratic candidates seeking to replace retiring Rep. Charles Rangel and the NY1-CNN presidential primary debate between Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.</p> <p>Moving toward the upcoming primaries for New York State Assembly and Senate, the network has, as of Thursday evening&rsquo;s Inside City Hall program, hosted candidates from six primaries. Two of those, however, were solo candidate interviews when the second person running in each of two races declined NY1&rsquo;s debate invitation.</p> <p>On Thursday&rsquo;s Inside City Hall, host Errol Louis moderated a four-candidate <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--replacing-espaillat.html" target="_blank">debate</a> in the 31st state Senate District race. He also held two separate individual interviews with candidates: incumbent Assembly Member Latrice Walker <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--no-debate-in-brooklyn-s-55th.html?cid=twitter_InsideCityHall" target="_blank">spoke with Louis</a> when her challenger, current City Council Member Darlene Mealy, declined to appear for a debate; and Tremaine Wright <a href="http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/2016-primary-prep-debates/2016/09/8/ny1-online--no-debate-in-brooklyn-s-56th.html?cid=twitter_InsideCityHall" target="_blank">spoke with Louis</a> when Karen Cherry, her competitor for the 56th Assembly District seat, which is being vacated by the long-term incumbent, opted not to appear.</p> <p>When an Inside City Hall producer emailed the show&rsquo;s press list to advise of Thursday night&rsquo;s program line-up, it was noted that Mealy and Cherry had declined to accept debate invitations. Gotham Gazette attempted to reach Mealy through her City Council office, to no avail, despite talking with an aide. A spokesperson for Cherry indicated that the candidate had a scheduling conflict.</p> <p>&ldquo;Those were the only two candidates this cycle who declined to attend. We held four debates (Senate District 10, Senate District 33, Senate District 31 and Assembly District 46) in addition to these two,&rdquo; said said Bob Hardt, NY1 political director, in a statement to Gotham Gazette. &ldquo;Generally, we try to give ample time before a debate but if space opens up at the last minute, we occasionally try to put together a debate within days in the interest of providing a service to our audience. In the case of the Mealy-Walker race, we reached out to both campaigns in the middle of August. In the case of the Cherry-Wright race, we reached out to both campaigns last week and Wright accepted but Cherry declined, indicating a desire to stay in the district.&ldquo;</p> <p>In local elections, an invitation to debate on NY1 is often candidates&rsquo; only opportunity to speak on television and reach a broader audience than typical campaigning allows. Inside City Hall is also watched by political insiders, the civic-minded public, and many New Yorkers interested in local political news. Debates offer candidates an opportunity for a performance to share by video afterward as well.</p> <p>Cherry&rsquo;s campaign communications director, Tony Herbert, told Gotham Gazette that the candidate was &ldquo;meeting with seniors and other people in the community&rdquo; at the time of the debate taping on Thursday. &ldquo;The option that was given was a conflict with her schedule,&rdquo; Herbert said. &ldquo;There was no other option. We would&rsquo;ve loved to have done it, but we couldn&rsquo;t meet that timeframe.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;We think she&rsquo;s gonna do well,&rdquo; he added. &ldquo;But we can&rsquo;t take anything for granted. We&rsquo;ve gotta be out there with constituents.&rdquo;</p> <p>In Wright&rsquo;s interview with Louis, the candidate discussed her pursuit of the Brooklyn Assembly seat, including her resume, which includes being a small business owner and chair of the local community board in Bedford-Stuyvesant.</p> <p>Wright said she wants to move to the Assembly in order to be a part of the budget process, provide legislative oversight, and bring resources back to her district. She did not mention the absence of her opponent, but Inside City Hall did have a graphic showing a map of the district with &ldquo;No Debate&rdquo; written above it.</p> <p><img src="http://www.gothamgazette.com/images/graphics/2014/03/AM_Walker.png" alt="AM Walker" width="250" height="151" style="margin: 5px; float: left;" />Assembly Member Walker&rsquo;s primary challenger in the 55th Assembly District, also in Brooklyn, City Council Member Darlene Mealy, is not known as an especially active Council member. Mealy, who is term-limited out of the Council at the end of 2017, is challenging Assembly Member Walker in an attempt to move to the state Legislature.</p> <p>The Council member&rsquo;s campaign committee has no clear contact information listed with the Board of Elections. An aide in her Council office did not make her available for an interview or send a statement explaining Mealy&rsquo;s decision not to debate on NY1.</p> <p>In Walker&rsquo;s NY1 interview, the short-term incumbent (pictured) explained her roots in her district and what she described as the privilege of representing her community in Albany. She touted bringing millions of dollars back to the district for a hospital and NYCHA repairs and described introducing bills aimed at expanding voting rights and registration. The Assembly member also explained how she is attempting to restore her constituents&rsquo; trust in government after her predecessor wound up in prison on corruption charges.</p> <p>While Louis, the Inside City Hall anchor, did lament the absence of Mealy, Walker did not discuss her opponent. The interview also featured a NY1 map of the district and the "No Debate" headline.</p> <p>State legislative primaries are Tuesday, September 13.</p> <p>***<br />by William Fowler and Ben Max, with reporting from Samar Khurshid<br /><a href="https://twitter.com/GothamGazette" target="_blank">@GothamGazette</a></p>