MAMARONECK, N.Y. - The race for Village Mayor heated up at the League of Women Voters' Candidate Forum at the Town Courthouse Wednesday, where both candidates distinguished themselves to voters in the audience.
Incumbent Mayor Norman Rosenblum (R-IN-C) didn't waste time making that distinction clear in his opening remarks. "You have a clear, distinct choice between (Toni) Ryan and myself; there's a philosophical difference," Rosenblum said. "I would describe my tenure as pro-active versus Toni's reactive."
Rosenblum blamed Ryan for the village missing the window of opportunity after Hurricane Irene on county, state and federal grants for disaster relief. "The reason we missed out on those applications and the possibility of people that have just recently been flooded is because Toni Ryan, who was on the board in 2007 and 2008, did not fill out those forms, so there's a direct result on that," he said.
In her closing remarks, Ryan asked why Rosenblum, who stated he attended every board meeting at that time, didn't inform the then Republican mayor of those initiatives himself.
"We haven't missed the boat, the boat went out on some of them and will come in again," she said.
Both candidates discussed forcing the action on flood mitigation. "We need be proactive and self-sufficient," said Ryan, who is doubtful that the Army Corps of Engineers will commit to a large-scale project.
"I think you have two people who are concerned about the community because of their long residence here," said Thomas Amodia, a village resident.
While the two mayoral candidates debated how to raise revenues, their respective running mates debated how they would operate under the two-percent property tax cap.
"The two-percent tax cap is not an issue because both years we've come under that and we plan to do that again next year," Santoro said.
Scott Dufault (D) claimed Rosenblum and his opponent Santoro were only able to hold taxes to 0.35 percent by dipping into the village's reserve fund. Santoro told Dufault and the audience that the fund had actually doubled since 2010 from $1.3 million to $2.6 million, citing figures from the village clerk's office.
"I thought it was so clear the differences between them," said Elizabeth Saenger, a village resident. "On each issue, they had clear and different positions."
For details on the District 7 county legislator debate, click here .
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