NYS Senate GOP eyes 2020: seats to regain, retain

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UTICA, NY (WUTR-TV) — After losing the stronghold of the New York State Senate floor in 2018, Republicans seek to regain their losses while retaining seats of outgoing party colleagues.

“We contend in a number of areas. Where we took the heavy losses were in the Hudson Valley and Long Island. So, I think Long Island is a scenario that you have to look at right now, you have to look at the valley. The city of New York is going to be very daunting,” said Senate Deputy Minority Leader Joe Griffo of Rome.

Where GOP Senator James Seward looks to gain footing is throughout the budget process.

At November’s end the state Division of the Budget released a mid-year budget report, identifying an estimated $6.1 billion spending gap for fiscal year 2021.

“I would like to get through this, what no doubt will be a, difficult budget season without resorting to new taxes,” Seward said.

“Another thing we need to watch for is to avoid cost shifts to local governments because that often results in higher local property taxes.”

Sen. James Seward, (R-Oneonta)

Aside from recruitment of candidates to challenge Democrats, Griffo says retention of seats being vacated by retirees is a priority.

“This is a challenge when you have an 8-seat deficit, and a number of current members retiring, that makes it much more challenging and daunting. But, it doesn’t mean it’s impossible,” Griffo said.

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