Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,I,C-Canandaigua) led an important conversation about New York State's future with thousands of local constituents tonight during his "Tele-Town Hall Meeting." During this evening's Tele-Town Hall Meeting, Leader Kolb heard from, and spoke with, thousands of area residents who took part in the innovative outreach event.
Leader Kolb's Tele-Town Hall Meeting was made available to residents of the 129th Assembly District, which includes parts of Cayuga, Cortland, Onondaga, Ontario and Seneca counties. Ontario County Treasurer Gary Baxter served as the moderator of Leader Kolb's Tele-Town Hall Meeting.
A Tele-Town Hall is an innovative outreach tool that lets elected officials hear from, and speak with, thousands of constituents simultaneously during an interactive telephone conference call. Tele-Town Hall participants were able to ask Leader Kolb specific questions and listen to his responses. The event also featured brief opinion polls seeking participants' views on issues related to public policy and New York State government.
Tonight's Tele-Town Hall meeting lasted from 6:30 to 7:30 and touched on issues directly affecting New York's future. Leader Kolb led a discussion addressing the 2011-12 State Budget; the property tax cap; unfunded mandate relief for local governments and school districts; the collection of sales taxes on cigarettes and gasoline sold on Native American lands; private sector job creation; comprehensive ethics reform; shrinking the size and cost of state government and convening a "People's Constitutional Convention" to reform Albany.
"I was thrilled that so many constituents took the time to participate in my Tele-Town Hall Meeting tonight and contribute their terrific ideas to help move our state forward, overcome its challenges and improve the quality of life for all New Yorkers," Leader Kolb said.
"Leader Kolb has always made it a top priority to stay in regular, close contact with his constituents and local elected officials like myself so we can have the latest news and information about what is happening in our state government," Treasurer Baxter said.
"Far too many people serving in state government seem to 'go Albany' and stop listening to the folks back home. Leader Kolb is one of the rare exceptions. He is constantly seeking local input and feedback about his public policy agenda and sharing news we can use about what Albany is doing, and how it is spending our money. Tonight's Tele-Town Hall Meeting is just the latest example of Leader Kolb's ongoing commitment to keeping the lines of communication open. Brian's approach is a breath of fresh air and genuinely appreciated by local taxpayers, myself included," Treasurer Baxter stated.
This evening's Tele-Town Hall Meeting was the second time Leader Kolb employed the cutting edge constituent outreach tool to stay in contact with residents. In April of 2009, Leader Kolb conducted his very first Tele-Town Hall Meeting for the 129th District.
"I believe that serving as an effective representative first and foremost means listening to your constituents, which is why I hosted tonight's Tele-Town Hall Meeting. With so many folks working longer hours, it is difficult for them to find the time to attend a traditional Town Hall Meeting. What is great about Tele-Town Halls is that they allow me to bring the meeting to my constituents so I can hear exactly what is on their minds and report back directly to them. I want to thank the thousands of people who participated in tonight's important conversation. I look forward to hosting more of these innovative, interactive public forums in the future," Leader Kolb concluded.