This is a letter to the editor from current Tompkins County Legislator Martha Robertson in support of legislature candidate Greg Mezey. To submit opinion letters, please review our letters policy here and submit them to Anna Lamb at alamb@ithacavoice.com.

Did you know there’s a local election going on right now?! Early yoting has already started (details below) in the Democratic Primary for Tompkins County Legislature seats – including District 13 in Dryden, the seat I’ve been honored to occupy since 2002. I’m not running for a sixth term and I was happy to see two quality candidates emerge to pick up the mantle, Greg Mezey and Samantha (Sam) Lushtak. 

Please vote! To learn about your choices in Dryden, watch the June 10 forum by the Tompkins County Democratic Committee at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RigPQiUjkMw

Personally, I was unsure of my own vote until I watched that forum. I came away from it convinced that Greg Mezey will make a great legislator. He knows the community, he’s thought deeply about the issues, and he’s well-prepared to do the job.

A local businessperson and a Cornell graduate (2009), Greg has been an active part of this community. He and his partner Ryan live on Slaterville Road, an important part of Dryden that’s seldom been represented in town or county politics. 

What I saw in Greg at the TCDC forum was a well-thought-out, nuanced perspective on our district and the county as a whole, with a special concern about how we’re going to “build back better” from the economic fallout of the pandemic. A member of the county’s Strategic Tourism Planning Board and STPB’s Budget Committee, Greg is especially concerned about the tourism and leisure economy here, which was hit the hardest this past 15 months. He feels an urgency about using the county’s American Rescue Plan funds to stimulate our local economy to reap a strong return on investment – on initiatives such as transportation, childcare, and workforce development. 

Greg brings a depth of experience and a range of skillsets that will contribute materially to the Tompkins County Legislature and help to create a better Tompkins County, not just for western Dryden, but for our whole community. 

In primary elections it can be hard to distinguish between candidates. But I think Greg Mezey has shown he’s the best person to do the job for Dryden’s District 13. 

Both candidates have said they’ll respect the results of the primary and not run in November on any other line. Even though Sam has the Working Families Party endorsement, that was decided before Greg had announced his candidacy.

Early voting is now through Sunday, June 20, at the Board of Elections at 128 E. Buffalo St. in Ithaca. Hours are 9:00 – 5:00 on Wednesday and Friday, 9:00 – 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, and 9:00 – 2:00 on Saturday and Sunday. On Election Day, Tuesday, June 22, vote at your usual polling place between 6:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.

Please be sure to vote! Local elections can be decided by just a handful of votes – as people in the Dryden School District found out just last month!