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ELMIRA, N.Y. – Leslie Danks Burke and Tom O’Mara, candidates in the race for the State Senate’s 58th District, will have the chance to highlight their visions for the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes in four additional debates held in towns across the district during these last thirty days before the November general election.

This follows Danks Burke’s open request last spring for a schedule of debates on the challenges facing a region that has long received less than its fair share from Albany. The candidates first appeared in a town hall-style debate on October 3 in Penn Yan.

“Voters in every corner of this 2700 square mile district should have a chance to ask why our leaders continue to send our tax dollars to NYC, while our schools get shortchanged and jobs leave. I look forward to our debates as a chance to talk with voters about my plans to start getting our fair share from Albany,” said candidate for State Senate Leslie Danks Burke.

Danks Burke first began making the case for debates back in June, with no response from Senator O’Mara for over three months.

“I’m glad Yates County SCOPE ultimately stepped up to lead the way by getting a debate in Penn Yan onto the calendar on October 3,” she said. “Once SCOPE took action, my opponent began agreeing to additional debates in the rest of the district.”

The four upcoming debates will be:

October 15th

Tompkins County League of Women Voters Forum

“The Space” at GreenStar

700 W Buffalo St, Ithaca, NY 14850


October 17th

WETM live televised debate

The Clemens Center’s Mandeville Hall

207 Clemens Center Pkwy, Elmira, NY 14901

7:00 pm
October 18th

Steuben County League of Women Voters Forum

Southeast Steuben Public Library

300 Nasser Civic Center Plaza #101, Corning, NY 14830

October 19th

Schuyler County League of Women Voters Forum

Watkins Glen Elementary School

612 S Decatur St, Watkins Glen, NY 14891


Michael Smith reports on politics and local news for the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached via email at, by cell at (607) 229-0885, or via Google Voice at (518) 650-3639.