It's one of the major races of the season in our area. The seat for Albany mayor stands open after almost two decades of Jerry Jennings at the helm. As we count down to the closing of the polls, YNN's Innae Park gives us a brief look at each of the candidates.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- “Well, it's almost going to be like 'Back to the Future,’” said Joe Sullivan, the Conservative candidate for Albany Mayor.
He said that is what Albany will look like if he is elected Mayor. Sullivan hopes to return to a simpler time, with less government involvement.
He added, “Government doesn't provide jobs, the private sector provides jobs. All the government does is to provide a favorable setting. Energy and education are the real keys to the future of Albany.”
Sullivan explained the type of Mayor he could be for Albany.
“We need political leaders who aren't just going to be followers. They've got to stand up for their community and that's what I'll do,” he said.
“I don't think I'm standard politician. I'm just a regular person who loves the city and has a huge breadth and depth of experience,” said Theresa Portelli, the Green Party candidate for Albany Mayor.
Portelli said she wouldn't be your typical mayor either. Some of her plans include changing the tax system.
“If we went to a land value tax, then we would be encouraging the development of our vacant properties. We have like, 800 to 900 of them, then we can get those vacant buildings back on the tax rolls,” she suggested.
Jesse Calhoun isn't as local as the other candidates. He has only been in Albany for six years. However, the Republican candidate said his musical background keeps him tuned to Albany’s economy.
Calhoun said, “Bands have a unique perspective because we are really connected to the small business community, like the coffee shops and the night clubs and when you start seeing them going away, it's easier to tell.”
He also has ideas to cut city costs.
“If we're running deficits and meanwhile people are making over $100,000, that doesn't click to me, that doesn't make sense,” said Calhoun.
Democratic candidate Kathy Sheehan has been city treasurer for the last four years and was a business executive prior to that.
“I believe that I have the background and experience from my business experience to lead and manage a team and learn from that team so we can constantly be improving how we deliver those services,” she said.
Her goals are to build Albany's neighborhoods, invest in all children's futures, revitalize the downtown area, and create recreation by the Hudson River.
Sheehan added, “We can really create the real vibrant residential city for all of our residents.”