To the editor:
I am writing on behalf of Assemblywoman Janet Duprey, who is running as an incumbent in the 115th District for the New York State Assembly.
I represent several sportsmen's organizations in Region 5 (of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation) and one statewide sportsmen group, causing me to spend a considerable amount of time with members of the New York State Assembly. As sportsmen, we have several issues with access to state lands, increases in license fees, reduced services from NYSDEC and "feel good" legislation proposals on firearms that are not effective at fighting crime but curtail our Second Amendment rights.
Assemblywoman Janet Duprey has always, quickly and efficiently, responded to requests to support sportsmen's issues each and every time they occur. She is also part of a unique triad with Assemblywoman Teresa Sayward and Sen. Betty Little. Together, these three North Country lawmakers have formed a wedge of support for issues near and dear to the interest of outdoor sportsmen and women. However, Teresa Sayward has decided not to run for another term. Whoever wins her district in the Assembly will be the "new kid on the block." Having spent a lot of time in the Legislative Office Building in Albany, I am aware of the time it takes to learn the process and be an effective member of the Assembly. There are the formal rules and the informal, unspoken way things get done.
It is crucial, from my point of view, that we do not send two inexperienced, novice assemblypersons from the North Country in the same year. Because downstate has so many more Assembly seats than we do, it is important that we do not lose all of our contact with influential committee chairmen and other important officials who can be available when it comes to avoiding the pitfalls and traps in the system in order to get legislation passed. It's not easy.
With hard economic times upon us, job losses in both public and private sectors, and increased restrictive land use on public lands, it is extremely important that our concerns are communicated across New York state. Now is not the time nor place to change the complete team.
As changes occur in our state government, we need to have experienced people in place while adding new members to be most effective in dealing with reorganization. I ask you to support Assemblywoman Janet Duprey, as we need her on the team more than ever. She can provide stability and experience while helping our new member shorten up the learning curve in making the transition so that our team is as effective as possible in the shortest amount of time.
Robert E. Brown