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Kathy Hochul drops in for a visit with The Batavian

By Howard B. Owens

Kathy Hochul, on her way back to Buffalo from a day spent in Rochester, called us and asked if she could stop by The Batavian's office and introduce herself.

She spent about 15 minutes here. I didn't want to dive too deep into an interview because I'm hoping to arrange a series of interviews with all of the candidates. But a chat about how beautiful Genesee County is and what a wonderful hub Batavia makes for the rural region turned into a discussion about protecting small businesses.

It turns out that Hochul's decision to run for the board in the Town of Hamburg was driven by her frustration with an effort to bring a Walmart to town.

Her mother owned a small shop in the village and Hochul saw her struggles to keep her business going and didn't want to see Walmart do any more damage to the local businesses.

"I decided to run for office because I want to have a say in the policies that effect local businesses," she said.

As for what she could do in Congress, she said tax codes and laws that give any incentive for manufacturers to move jobs overseas need to be reviewed and repealed if necessary.

She also said it's time to revisit NAFTA.

"We need to look at the policies put in place that were intended to help our area but they backfired," Hochul said.

She said a resurgence in manufacturing jobs in Western New York would be the best way to protect locally owned stores.

"We need to make sure the small shops in our cities and villages are not boarded up," Hochul said. "These shops sustain people who live in the community."

As she's been quoted as saying already, Hochul reiterated that she's not afraid to stand up to powerful interests, including her own party if necessary.

She pointed out her public opposition to Gov. Paterson's proposal to require residents to buy new license plates for their cars, and her efforts to fight Thruway tolls.

"No entity is too big that I won't fight if it's on behalf of my residents," Hochul said.

Finally: here's an invitation for Jane Corwin, Jack Davis or David Bellavia to stop by office of The Batavian any time.

Bob Harker

"She pointed out her public opposition to Gov. Paterson's proposal to require residents to buy new license plates for their cars, and her efforts to fight Thruway tolls."

Quite resume - lost on both counts.

Mar 24, 2011, 7:05pm Permalink
Chris Charvella

Bob, she won on both those issues. The new license plates weren't mandated and I believe some toll booths were removed. I'll get the relevant information and put it up here.

Mar 24, 2011, 8:06pm Permalink
Justin Burger

Lost on both counts? Residents aren't required to buy new license plates for their cars. You only have to switch to the new plates if you are getting a new registration or are changing class. Otherwise you send in your renewal and keep your white plates. I'd call it a win.

Mar 24, 2011, 8:08pm Permalink
Emily Davis

I work at Bob Evans in Batavia..and she was actually in there talking.. not to the younger, but older people in there eating...and was taking pictures with them. She asked if she could take a picture of her talking to me but I declined.

Mar 24, 2011, 9:42pm Permalink
Bea McManis

Score one for Kathy, who had an intelligent discussion with substance and didn't spend her 15 minutes knocking down her opposition.

Just out of curiosity, why decline?

Mar 24, 2011, 9:52pm Permalink
George Richardson

"Bellavia for Batavia and a bunch of other people" I would put that on a thousand coffee cups and bumper stickers and then start brewing coffee and looking for people to drink it with me. Politicians these days don't know how to get bang for the buck. It would give him name recognition in Batavia, at the very least. And Donuts!, don't forget the Donuts, damn I almost forgot about Donuts. That's the best part.

Mar 24, 2011, 10:11pm Permalink
Justin Burger

George, isn't that what we're all really striving for in life anyway, donuts? Where else do you think the phrase dollars to donuts comes from? Money makes the world go round, but we just end up spending it on Honey Crullers and fry cakes at Tim Hortons (or your favorite donut joint).

Mar 25, 2011, 12:27am Permalink

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