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Frankly I cannot imagine a mature adult wasting their vote for Tarik Abdelazim this fall. His only experience is under a mayor with less than stellar performance and an abundance of far out ideas and failed actions related to the implementation of those wasted dreams. This county has been in decline for the last 40 years and this guy has no viable plan for tomorrow much less the next 4 years. We need creative realistic thinkers who are wise and mature enough to look at all options not just those bought and paid for by the green industry. Our future depends on a well rounded thoughtful approach to problem solving. You can rest assured that just like other short thinking leaders from the past in Broome County, with Mr Abdelazim you will be buried in taxes and receive less services if you choose to waste your vote in November. Lets let the DEC make our decisions based on science and facts. Enough of the fear, hyperbole and falsehoods. I really have no faith at all that a politician can make the best decision for all, only the best most profitable for themselves Pay attention get involved. JLCpulse

BINGHAMTON -- In the month since he declared his candidacy for Broome County executive, Tarik Abdelazim's cautionary stance against hydraulic fracturing has been perhaps the most clearly defined piece of his platform.

That was underscored Wednesday afternoon, when the Democratic candidate and other speakers gathered outside Government Plaza in Binghamton for a rally urging state lawmakers to fund a public health assessment of the natural gas extraction technique.

"The primary responsibility of all of our public officials is to protect public heath and safety," Abdelazim said. "So I see no reason why we don't take the same attention and consideration in protecting the health of our loved ones as we are protecting the health of our environment."

The speakers Wednesday also included Binghamton Mayor Matthew T. Ryan, local physician Niru Anne and several anti-fracking activists.

Participants upbraided Albany lawmakers, including Sen. Thomas W. Libous, R-Binghamton, for allowing funding for a health assessment to be pulled from the state's 2012-13 budget in March.

"We are seriously, here, considering approving a process in New York State when we don't know the impacts," Ryan said.

Abdelazim urged Libous and to support a bill pending in the state Assembly that would restore funding for the health impact study.

"This is going to be a decision determined not by folks up in Albany, not by the special interests, but by the people," he said. "We need to provide them with the information so that they can make a decision about how they want to proceed with their communities."

In a brief statement Wednesday, Libous said politicians should not determine how the state moves forward with fracking.

"We should let the scientists and experts at the DEC do their work to make sure this process moves forward in an environmentally safe way," he said.

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