County Legislator Colin Smith officially announced his campaign for reelection today in Legislative District 1, which contains parts of Cortlandt, Peekskill, and Yorktown. Smith was the first Democrat in decades to win the district, and did so convincingly in 2019 when he defeated former Peekskill Mayor Frank Catalina by 6% in an open seat election.
“I’m excited to run for reelection because I’m proud of my record of delivering results for the people of Westchester County,” said Legislator Colin Smith. “My mission in office has been to focus on policy and getting things done for the people that elected me - not picking partisan fights or grandstanding. The last year has been quite different than I expected when I was sworn in in January 2020, but working together we’ve made great progress on the big issues that matter.”
As a County Legislator, Smith has played an integral role in the County’s efforts to improve and reimagine how we police our communities. As Chair of the Public Safety Committee of the Board of Legislators, and as a member of the countywide Police Reform and Reimagining Task Force, he has fostered productive dialogue and sought to build consensus around divisive national issues - ensuring that they are handled respectfully and effectively.
He has also been active in the County’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, where he and his colleagues on the County Board passed Property Tax Relief for struggling homeowners, aid to small businesses to help them survive the past year, secured PPE and testing, helped with food insecurity and childcare for vulnerable communities, addressed rising homelessness due to the pandemic, and have recently worked to bring Westchester County’s vaccination system up to speed.
Prior to the pandemic, Smith and the Board of Legislatures has passed a historic reduction in property taxes, passed a round of bail and discovery reform, banned plastic bags and exotic animals, and had undertaken a Housing Needs Assessment and worked on eviction prevention to help people afford to stay in their homes.
Smith, who has been endorsed by all three Democratic Committees in the district as well as the Westchester Democratic Party, concluded, saying: “I’m looking forward to running a respectful, issues based campaign against whoever my Republican opponent is. Policy matters, facts matter, and that’s what I’ll be talking about.”
Smith was also endorsed by a number of prominent elected officials.
County Executive George Latimer said: “Colin has proven to be a strong advocate for his communities and their residents. He is always well informed on key issues and he knows how to navigate the process of County government to achieve tangible benefits for his district.”
Senator Pete Harckham said: "Colin Smith is exactly who Yorktown, Peekskill, and Cortlandt need representing them in the County Legislature. If you re-elect Colin I know he'll continue to fight for our environment, for good jobs and our downtowns, and for an equitable COVID response that allows us to emerge from this pandemic even stronger."
Assemblywoman Sandy Galef said: “In Colin Smith's first two years in office, he has demonstrated his strong abilities to be a leader on the Westchester County Board of Legislators. As Chair of the Public Safety Committee he has led the effort to adopt new policies on policing measures and to assure equity in criminal justice matters. He has become an important member of the county board and an effective elected official for the communities he represents. Colin conducts himself with honesty, fairness, caring, calmness, intelligence and integrity. I am a real fan of Colin Smith.”
Peekskill Mayor Andre Rainey said: “I'm excited to support Colin Smith on his candidacy for re-election for County Legislature. Colin is an elected official with enthusiasm and passion who works and lives his values. Colin is consistent, ethical and genuine. Colin's vision for the future, his work ethic and commitment to get us there, is second to none. Colin's leadership is the leadership that creates trust in Government from those who find it difficult to trust their Government. Colin has helped secure fair and affordable housing, funding for our education and opportunities for our youth, environmental justice initiatives, and for greater quality of life for his constituents. As many elected officials may promise to fight for these things, Colin has promised and delivered results. His re-election is what our future needs, now.”
Cortlandt Supervisor Linda D. Puglisi said: "I support Colin Smith for Re-Election as our County Legislator. Colin has been a great partner with me and our Town Board right from the beginning when he was first elected. He has been an important participant on our Indian Point Closure Task Force and has also been a strong voice on the police reform County task force. Colin Smith is assisting the Town of Cortlandt on infrastructure improvements (sewers, etc.) and has been involved with us in honoring our Veterans. During the Pandemic, Colin has been very helpful in providing us with information. We appreciate his efforts. Please join me in re-electing Colin Smith to the Westchester County Board of Legislators this November. Thank you."
Deputy County Executive Ken Jenkins said: "Colin Smith has been an effective and dedicated County Legislator and I'm proud to endorse him for re-election. Colin understands that the job of County Legislator is about building consensus and coalitions to get things done for the people we represent. He hasn't shied away from the tough issues facing our County but has tackled them head on. Colin is an asset to our County Government and the kind of Legislator we need more of."
Peekskill Deputy Mayor Vivian McKenzie, who is the endorsed Democratic candidate for Peekskill Mayor, said: "I've had the pleasure working with Colin Smith for years - first when he was my City Council colleague in Peekskill and now in his role as County Legislator - and I'm happy to endorse him for re-election. Colin's done exactly what he promised to do in his campaign two years ago: work together to deliver results for the people we represent. That's what governing is about and it's why I'm so excited to work with Colin for another two years."
Cortlandt Councilmember Richard Becker, who is the endorsed Democratic candidate for COrtlandt Supervisor, said: “Colin Smith has been an excellent County Legislator for the last two years and deserves your vote again. As a Cortlandt Town Board member, Colin has been my go to contact at The County. He is always willing to help Cortlandt and has been remarkably successful in getting it done for us. He's fully committed to protecting our environment, investing in our infrastructure, and working to unite our community behind our shared values in the face of those who would seek to divide us.”
County Board Chair Ben Boykin said: "Two years ago when I named Colin Smith the Chair of the Public Safety Committee, none of us knew just how central that body would be - but Colin is proving every day why he was the right choice. As a member of our countywide Police Reform and Reimagining Task Force, he works together, finding common ground and building consensus, to make a difference in the lives of every Westchester resident. He has earned the trust of people on all sides of the aisle and he deserves your vote for reelection."
County Legislator Catherine Borgia, who represents the parts of Peekskill and Cortlandt not represented by Smith, said: “Colin Smith has earned another two years in office by his tireless work for his constituents, his thoughtful legislative agenda, and the significant skills he brings to the Board of Legislators. Colin is a great advocate for Cortlandt and Peekskill and I have seen firsthand the impact he has made on the big issues facing Northern Westchester. I can say without a doubt that he's the right choice for District 1 and I look forward to working with him again moving forward.”
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