NORTH SALEM, N.Y. -- When it comes to the 40th Senate District, Republican voters seem most concerned with protecting their 2nd Amendment Rights.
The NY Safe Act was one of the many issues discussed Wednesday night at the North Salem Ambulance Corps during a debate hosted by the North Salem Tea Party between Bob Castelli and Terrence Murphy, who are running for the Republican primary. Justin Wagner is running on the Democratic side for the seat held by Greg Ball.
"New York is upside down," Murphy said. "We have the highest property taxes and we are the least business friendly state. That's a recipe for disaster. We have lost 400,000 jobs in the last three years."
Murphy was critical of the Start Up New York spending $200 million to run ads in New York.
Castelli said the state needs to offer more incentives for businesses to stay and grow in New York,
"The state is going to hell in a hand basket," Castelli said.
Castelli proposed lowering taxes and deregulation to get more businesses to come to New York.
Murphy and Castelli were both critical of the New York Safe Act and both vowed to protect the 2nd Amendment.
"Overnight law abiding citizens became criminals," Murphy said. "You don't pass a bill at 2 a.m. That's like passing Obamacare."
Castelli, who was a state trooper, said he was a competitive shooter and the NY Safe Act would not have prevented an incident like the Sandy Hook shooting.
"I debated the 2nd Amendment on the floor of the assembly," Castelli said. "I have a proven track record. You cannot legislate against insanity. That law would not have saved a single life."
Dick Lyman, supervisor of Pound Ridge, asked what they would do about mandate relief. Castelli said in the assembly he attempted to pass mandate relief legislation but was unsuccessful. Murphy criticized how unfunded mandates are onerous on small businesses and on municipal governments.
The 40th Senate District covers Pleasantville, Pound Ridge, Armonk, Bedford, Briarcliff, Peekskill, Chappaqua, Cortlandt, Lewisboro, Mount Pleasant, Mount Kisco, North Salem, Yorktown and parts of Putnam and Dutchess County.