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Tobin Reelection Bid For Cortland Mayor Faces Third Party Challenge

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Democratic Cortland Mayor Brian Tobin is seeking a third term in office.

Tobin made his intention run for reelection official today.

In his announcement Tobin says he has worked hard to give the people of Cortland a government entity that they could not only trust, but be proud of.

Tobin said he has worked with the City Council and department heads to modernize city operations and look for efficiencies in the operations. Tobin said working with neighboring governments he has saved city town and county taxpayers money as well. Tobin points out the city has stayed within the 2% tax cap over the last four years.

Tobin says he has worked to help encourage small business growth in Cortland but help support large companies like Marietta while working to secure a company like Byrne Dairy.

Tobin said if re-elected he plans to keep working to improve and strengthen the city’s residential neighborhoods. He pledged greater code enforcement and updates in zoning.

Tobin who hinted at his election plans in the state of the city address in March faces opposition in his bid for a 3rd term. Cortland resident My’shell Titus has filed a petition to run on the working families party line. Titus has not served in elective office in Cortland before.

Titus is the second working families candidate to run this year. Former Democratic Party chair and election commissioner William Wood has also filed a working families petition to run for a seat on the Cortland County Legislature. Wood is running against incumbent Democrat Raylynn Knolls.

 

Below is the full text of Tobin’s campaign announcement:

Over the past four years, the Common Council and I have worked hard to give the people of Cortland a government entity that they could not only trust, but be proud of. I have enjoyed the opportunity to work with not only the Council, but also the many partners that it takes to help a community meet an ever increasing and diverse list of needs.

It has been a challenge.

But we have focused on our priorities, made headway, and continue to show progress.
We have worked on housing, with the intention of stabilizing our neighborhoods to help everyone find a place to live that they can enjoy and be proud of. We will enforce the law, consistently, and it will benefit the residents of the City. We are also in the process of working on zoning via a grant from NYSERDA which will help the west side of the city, and we will be doing a lot of planning on the east end of the City with a Brownfields Opportunity grant. We have also been working on the flooding issue, to protect private property as much as we can. Neighborhoods are the anchors of our city, and we need to keep them attractive.

We have worked on improving the opportunities for businesses in the county- be it large companies such as Byrne Dairy and Marietta, or smaller companies that can take advantage of the grants we have available to small businesses. If a business is looking for assistance, they should approach the city to see what we can do to help them.

Downtown, we pushed for the 421m tax abatement to foster the upper story development of our buildings. We’ve added cameras on Main Street to improve safety, continue to work on modifying parking, and we’re doing a market analysis to help determine what businesses will best suit our downtown.

We have partnered with other municipalities in new ways to become more efficient- purchasing a sewer camera, hiring an assessor, taking the lead on working on a Government Efficiency Plan. A plan that not only saves the city taxpayers on their city and county taxes- but we were able to pull in every municipality in the county to ensure a rebate county-wide for county and local municipal taxes. This was not easy, it was made possible by the city and our employees’ willingness to move to the Tompkins County Healthcare Consortium; which was a cost saving’s for the taxpayer and the majority of our employees.

With our negotiations with employees and the various bargaining units, we have been able to come to terms that have been fair to the employees and the taxpayers. It has taken a lot of negotiating, and a willingness for both sides to have some ground to give, but so far we have been able to be reasonable. this is because we have been firm, fair and consistent with all bargaining units, and we will continue to do so.
I have stood behind the department heads in their decision making, because we have promoted good management. We have had some disagreements at times, but I know that we have the general public’s support because we have fought for cost-efficiency and good government. We will continue to negotiate for contracts that are fair to the taxpayer.

We’ve managed finances well, keeping the tax rate under a 2% increase each year. We control our costs while providing quality services, to keep the City an affordable option for people to purchase a home in and live with their family, able to enjoy the many high-quality services and opportunities that we provide to the community.

Our youth are another area in which we need to focus our efforts. We have worked to improve the opportunities our children have, between rebuilding Wickwire pool, investing in new playground equipment in our parks, and making our community safe for all. We need to continue to find ways to make our community an enjoyable place to live and grow up. We can do this by improving our neighborhoods, continuing to give businesses opportunities to grow and employ our residents, and giving places for people to gather, socialize, and play that are safe and attractive.

Based upon the past four years of experience, I am optimistic and enthusiastic about not only what we have accomplished but also what the future can hold. So after consulting with my wife, and with her blessing, I have decided to run for a third term as Mayor for the City of Cortland. I am proud of the accomplishments that I have achieved after four years on the Council, and four years as Mayor. More importantly, I am proud of the way that we, as a community, can come together and work to achieve our goals. I appreciate the support that I have received from so many in our community, and I would relish the opportunity to continue to work with the wonderful people of Cortland County to help guide us in a direction that is best for Cortland. I understand the scope and depth of the challenge, but I also know that together we can achieve greatness. As I said in my first campaign for Mayor- It’s yours, it’s mine, it’s ours- Cortland. Let’s keep moving Cortland forward!

Brian Tobin

 

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