Erie County Legislature Patrick Burke is throwing his hat into the ring for New York State Assembly. Burke officially launched his candidacy Tuesday for the 142nd District.
The seat was vacated following the November election of Michael ‘Mickey’ Kearns to Erie County Clerk.
Burke, a Democrat, said after serving the last four years in county government he's ready to work on a state level.
"Most people would probably recognize my work banning plastic microbeads - it's probably my largest accomplishment, but the reality is that got done because the state didn't do it and it should have. And it really goes to most of my initiatives from banning Conversion Therapy, which was widely known as the PENCE Bill to trying to block Neonicotinoids - which are a pesticide that kill bees,” Burke noted.
But it's unclear if there will be a special election this spring or as part of the general election in the fall. That will be decided by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
"They haven't declared a special election. From everything I am hearing there will be a special, but even if there isn't my announcement is that I'm running for the seat, it will be in 2018 and if there is a special I will be running as a Democrat and if there is a primary - I'll be primarying as a Democrat and I'll be working as a Democrat in the general election to get elected,” Burke explained.
The 142nd Assembly District includes South Buffalo, part of Lackawanna, West Seneca and Orchard Park. Others who have voiced interest in a possible run for the seat include South District Buffalo Common Council member Chris Scanlon and Lackawanna Mayor Geoff Szymasnki.