BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown was on hand to greet the president Thursday for his trip. Then after the president left, he sat down with his fellow mayoral candidates for another debate. All three candidates came out swinging.
The questions in the debate came directly from people who live in the city, the people whose lives will be directly impacted by the outcome of this election. It shouldn’t come as a surprised that education took center stage for much of the debate. Raising the question, should the mayor have more control over Buffalo’s school system?
Mayoral candidate Bernie Tolbert said, “We have nine school board members. Six elected in the[ir] district[s]; I suggest that the other three should be appointed by the mayor. Also the option of the mayor having the ability to appoint the superintendent.”
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said, "Actions speak louder than words. Over my tenure as mayor, we've raised our commitment as a city to the board of education by over $13 million during the course of my administration."
Mayoral candidate Sergio Rodriguez said, “We should seek nothing less than full mayoral control over the education system.”
Another hot topic Thursday night was, what is being done to combat crime in the Queen City?
Rodriguez said, “Right now, under the current administration, gun-related homicides have increased.”
Tolbert said, "People should be able to feel comfortable that they have a police department that's going to respond in effectively, timely, and in a manner that's going to make them safe."
Brown said, “Our police department has done a very good job in combatting quality of life crime. We will continue to work on that.”
One question was over Erie Community College’s plans to expand its suburban campus. All three candidates said they want to see ECC expand its city campus, instead of the north campus. Critics of suburban expansion say city expansion would be a better investment for Buffalo.
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