3 face off in debate for Yonkers mayor

The three candidates for Yonkers mayor came to News 12 Westchester's studio tonight to face off in a debate.

The three candidates running for the mayorship are Republican City Councilman John Murtagh, Democratic state Assemblyman Mike Spano and businessman Carlo Calvi, running on the Independence Party line.

The candidates discussed numerous issues from Yonkers' budget, school cuts, crime, pensions and police overtime.

On the issue of pensions and overtime, all three agreed that something must be done to curb the overtime hours and pension padding.

Murtagh said he would move to a federal-style system where one can earn as much overtime as necessary, but one's pension would be based upon their salary without overtime. Calvi said he would appoint someone to continually watch city employee salaries, flagging and questioning anyone whose overtime far exceeded expectations. Assemblyman Spano said he would fire the responsible commissioners who let such egregious overtime accruals take place, such as the police commissioner in regard to the officer who reportedly took home around $300,000 in a single year.

The candidates also agreed that crime, especially gang violence, is too high in the city.

Calvi said he would force developers and large companies in the city to fund community programs for kids to keep them off the street and would hire 100 new officers at NYPD salary rates, instead of Yonkers? current rates. Murtagh said that while the police department is doing the best it can, crime prevention starts with good schools and a good city economy that promotes businesses to come in and create jobs. Spano said he would push to keep federal prosecutors in the city, keeping gang members off the street longer thanks to harsher federal statuettes regarding gangs while increasing after-school opportunities.

Yonkers voters will go to the polls to decide on their next mayor on Nov. 8.

Yonkers mayoral candidates face off in debateSpano, Murtagh set to face off for Yonkers mayor

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