Rockland County Central Labor Council (CLC) President Gil
Heim said the organization endorsed county and municipal candidates who support
working people. The endorsements announced on Thursday cross party lines and
include both incumbents and challengers.
For the two countywide races, the CLC supports Democrats David Fried for county executive and incumbent Paul Piperato for county clerk. In the Town of Clarkstown, it is backing Democratic incumbent Supervisor Alex Gromack, Town Clerk Justin Sweet and Councilwoman Stephanie Hausner. On the Republican side, the 30,000-member council is behind incumbents Councilman George Hoehmann, Highway Superintendent Wayne Ballard and Town Justices Craig Johns and Scott Ugell.
In the Town of Orangetown races, CLC is supporting Republican Walter Wettje for supervisor and Democrat Christopher Smith for receiver of taxes.
The council also endorsed Town of Ramapo Democratic incumbents Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence and Councilman Patrick Withers. It is backing Stony Point Democrat Edward Onderdonk for council and Republican James Monaghan for council.
“What we need now more than ever are elected officials who will be the voice of the people,” said Heim. “That is why we have endorsed a strong group of candidates that will not forget who they work for. They work for the people of Rockland County.”
Heim also said the council’s members will help with grassroots campaigns and phone banks. The affiliated unions include CWA, CSEA Region 3, IBEW Local 320, Laborers 754, Rockland County Teachers Association and others.
“David is our candidate and David’s the candidate for labor,” said Heim.
Fried said he wanted to develop a partnership with the council and its members for the campaign and if elected, to continue during his term in office. Fried said the days of status quo must end in the county.
“Because at the end of the day when you take the approaches that this status quo government has pursued, it just shifts it to someplace else,” said Fried. “It takes a problem and places it elsewhere. It doesn’t do anything to actually solve it.”
Phillips said this may be the most challenging time since the depression and he plans to call for a tax summit to bring together all taxing entities to discuss the situation and solutions for taxpayers.
“Someway, somehow we need to put our heads together,” he said.
Gromack said there has been a concerted effort to maintain Clarkstown’s economy in difficult times.
“But more importantly I think we’ve been able to keep things going to keep the economy going here in Clarkstown,” said Gromack.
Piperato and Smith also attended the announcement along with County Democratic Chairwoman Kristen Stavisky.