Thank you for your support!
While things didn't turn out the way I would've liked on Election Day, I met a lot of great people and I was overwhelmed by the number of people who volunteered to make phone calls, stuff envelopes, put labels on postcards, do lit drops and put up signs. Thanks to all of you and to all of the people who voted for me.
10/29 - New York Named Highest Taxed State in the Nation
Recently, the Tax Foundation released a report stating New York has the highest in the nation taxes. New Yorkers pay a whopping 12.8% in state and local taxes. For several years in a row New York has been ranked as highest in the nation on taxes. New York has simultaneously received among the lowest in the nation rankings for friendliness to business.
Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo has been an Assemblywoman since 2006 and was a member of the legislature for one of New York’s largest tax increases in history. In 2009 New York State tax and fee increases were valued at $5.7 billion. This tax and fee increase fell on the backs of those already hurting from the 2008 economic downturn. Taxes have risen 30% since Assemblywoman Lupardo has been in office.
“We need to get rid of the moniker highest taxes in the nation,” said Lewis. “It is unfortunate that Assemblywoman Lupardo hasn’t done more to curb New York’s appetite for taxes during her tenure in office. We need a voice in Albany to stand up for the Southern Tier and get these taxes under control.”
10/25 - Lupardo: Manhattan's Sheldon Silver the "Best Option" for Upstate
(Binghamton, NY) Tuesday, on Bob Joseph’s radio show “Binghamton Now” Assembly candidates Julie Lewis and Donna Lupardo squared off in a debate. Among the many topics discussed included the Assembly’s long-time leader Sheldon Silver.
Silver has recently been embroiled in a sexual harassment payoff scandal and the incident is being investigated by the Joint Commission on Public Integrity (JCOPE). Sliver allowed a $103,000 payoff of taxpayer money to two former employees of Assemblyman Vito Lopez, who has had a history of sexual harassing employees. A third former employee has filed claims but the case has not been resolved.
When asked about Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and his recent sexual harassment scandal, Assemblywoman Lupardo said that she “doesn’t see anyone who could lead the Democratic Assembly Conference while being open minded about upstate issues, other than Speaker Silver.”
Lupardo has sidestepped the truth about his behavior and the Assembly rules that allow such payouts in the first place. She even went so far as to say we should wait and see what happens in the investigation. Yet Silver already admitted publicly he "erred" in making the taxpayer funded payments and covering up the scandal and that he "won't do it again."
“"The Assembly rules must be changed to stop taxpayer funded hush money," said Lewis." “If Assemblywoman Lupardo can't stand up against corruption within her own party, it's time for our 'trusted leader' to go."
9/25 - Small Business Endorses Julie Lewis for Assembly
(Albany, NY) New York’s leading small business association, the National Federation of Independent Business, has endorsed Julie Lewis for election in the 123rd Assembly district.
“Julie Lewis is the right candidate for small business in this race--and the candidate who has demonstrated the strongest support for the small business agenda,” said NFIB/New York State Director Mike Durant. “Julie will stand with small business and fight to reduce taxes and lower New York’s crushing cost of doing business. She will say no to costly new mandates, support common sense lawsuit reform and work to reform New York’s stifling regulatory burden. We look forward to working with Julie in the State Assembly on behalf of New York’s small business community,” Durant said.
Small business owners and their employees vote in high numbers and are known for actively recruiting friends, family members and acquaintances to go to the polls.
NFIB’s political support is based on the candidate’s position and record on small-business issues. Lewis’ endorsement comes from the NFIB/New York SAFE (Save America’s Free Enterprise) Trust, the political action committee for NFIB/New York’s membership. The endorsement puts the considerable grassroots support of the state’s small businesses behind the Lewis campaign.
For more information on the National Federation of Independent Business, visit www.NFIB.com.
9/12 - Donna Lupardo receives another failing “Jobs” Grade
(Vestal, NY) Another day, another failing jobs grade.
Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo received another failing grade from a New York Jobs Advocate, this time from the New York chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).
Lupardo’s voting record generated a 43% rating out of 100 from the NFIB. This comes on the heels of receiving two other failing grades from Jobs Advocates (a 50% grade from The Business Council and a 58% rating from Unshackle Upstate). In 2011, Lupardo received a 60% from The Business Council and in 2009-2010, she received a 25% rating.
“The Assemblywoman talks a good game on job creation, but her voting record speaks for itself,” said Assembly candidate Julie Lewis. "Donna Lupardo talks about creating jobs while she’s in her district, but when she goes to Albany she votes against job creation in our community. As a small business owner, my votes will support business friendly legislation.”
To view NFIB's voting record grades, visit here.
8/31 - Lewis Calls for Ethics Probe of Vito Lopez Scandal
Candidate for New York State Assembly Julie Lewis called for a full ethics probe into this week's scandal involving Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver's secret payouts to cover-up sexual harassment complaints against Democrat Assemblyman Vito Lopez.
Silver's Assembly Ethics Committee censured Lopez last week after affirming sexual-harassment accusations from Lopez staffers. This week, Assembly Speaker Silver admitted to organizing $103,080 in taxpayer money to make secret payments to the same women to prevent additional allegations from surfacing.
"As a woman, I'm disgusted, and as a taxpayer I'm ashamed," said Lewis. "This kind of behavior and environment is exactly what needs to change in the Assembly. I’m disappointed Assemblywoman Lupardo hasn’t already called for an investigation into her Assembly Leadership. I hope she joins me.”
8/28 - Julie Lewis Unveils Her "We Need Jobs Now" Plan
Update: Check out Newschannel 34's coverage of this story here.
Update 2: The Press & Sun article can be found here.
(Vestal, NY) With The Business Council of New York State and Unshackle Upstate's recent failing grades for Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo in job creation, Julie Lewis unveiled her plan to bring jobs to New York State today.
“As a mother I wouldn’t be happy if my kids came home with a 50 and a 58 in any subject. The people of Binghamton, Vestal and Union deserve better. My record as a County Legislator shows that I can do better.”
Julie’s “We need Jobs Now” Plan includes:
“We need jobs now. By providing these incentives to employers to hire now we’ll put people in our community back to work.” Lewis said “I know it takes a lot of hard work to grow a small business. We need to make sure State government isn’t in the way of people who want to grow their business and hire more people.”
"Julie really understands the difficulties small businesses face in New York State," said Christy Everett, owner of Powersports X in Vestal. "When it's easier to do business across the border in Pennsylvania, or for customers to order from other states online, it's hard to keep a business in New York going."
For more information on Julie's plan to bring jobs to our area, click here.
8/23 - Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo has Failed Us on Job Creation
Two groups that represent people who create jobs released failing grades for Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo last week.
The Business Council of New York State gave her a grade of 50, and Unshackle Upstate gave her a grade of 58.
Both of these are failing scores for any school student.
7/23 - Julie Lewis gets on the ballot with twice as many signatures as needed in her run against Lupardo
Julie Lewis filed twice as many signatures as she needed to be placed on the Republican, Conservative and Independence Party lines on the ballot for November.
“Julie met with our Executive Committee and proved to them that she shares the values of the Conservative Party.” James M. Thomas, Chair of the Broome County Conservative Committee said. “She’s held the line on spending and taxes as a County Legislator and she’ll do the same in Albany. She voted to cut the pay of top administrators at the County by 5%. That’s the kind of thinking we need in the Assembly. We’re proud to have endorsed Julie and look forward to working with her to get her elected in November.”
5/31 - County Legislator challenges Lupardo for Assembly seat
BINGHAMTON -- Broome County Legislator Julie Lewis will challenge New York Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo for her seat, one the Endwell Democrat has held since 2004.
"The time is right for me," said Lewis, a one-term Republican on the county legislature. The 42-year-old Lewis made her announcement Thursday in Binghamton to a crowd of about 30-40 supporters, elected officials and family members.
Lewis represents the 6th District, which includes southeastern Vestal and most of the towns of Binghamton and Conklin. She was elected to her first two-year term in 2010.
She serves as vice president of the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York Inc., a pro-natural gas drilling group. Lewis said the region needs someone who understands the pros and cons of gas drilling.
Horizontal drilling, the controversial method of using large volumes of water to extract natural gas from the Marcellus Shale, has been banned in New York.
Proposed regulations have been under review for more than four years by the state's Department of Environmental Conservation in Albany.
"The gas drilling issue is going to be the hot button topic," Lewis said. Earlier, Lewis made gentle fun of discussions she heard while listening to the state Assembly debate in Albany, including the issue of escaped parakeets.
The candidate said she supported safe drilling. The process has been underway in other states, including Pennsylvania.
Lupardo said the gas drilling issue has dominated the state's environmental agenda. She serves on the Assembly's Committee on Environmental Conservation, she said.
"I fully believe the majority of (my) constituents support my cautious approach," Lupardo said of her primarily urban 126th District, which includes the City of Binghamton and the towns of Vestal and Union.
Meanwhile, Lewis, who owns her own photography business, said she would work for prevent tax increases and seek cuts in spending. The state needs a comprehensive energy plan, which includes natural gas and other sources of energy, she said.
5/30 - Lewis to challenge Lupardo in state assembly race
BINGHAMTON -- Broome County Legislator Julie Lewis, R-District 6, is planning to announce her candidacy for the New York State Assembly currently held by Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, D-Endwell.
Lewis is expected to announce her candidacy at an event at the Holiday Inn Arena in Binghamton on Thursday afternoon, according to an e-mail invitation.
A business owner and an officer with the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York, Lewis has represented a legislative district that includes parts of the towns of Vestal, Binghamton and Conklin since 2011.