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Will a fourth run for state Assembly finally get John Sharon a win?

Tom Magnarelli
John Sharon at his campaign headquarters on South Salina Street.

Syracuse Common Councilor Pam Hunter, the Democratic nominee for state Assembly in the 128th district, will be running against Republican John Sharon in November.

This is Sharon’s fourth time running for the seat and he said the problems in his district are not getting any better. This time around, Sharon said he is going to push his infrastructure and jobs agenda more aggressively in public and with the media.

“I can be a top cheerleader for this community," Sharon said. "I can reach out to businesses. I can research businesses. Where are they going? What are they doing? Who’s expanding? Where are they looking at?”

Sharon said he is deeply concerned about the report that puts Syracuse as the number one city in the nation for the highest concentration of minorities in poverty. In at least 10 neighborhoods in his district, about half the population lives below the poverty line -- in a couple of those neighborhoods the percentage is even higher.

“We got to find a way to bring some businesses into this community, we got to be able to make something, we got to be able to offer some pathway for success for these people,” Sharon said.

Sharon said he would support a program like Job Corps that would put low income residents in his district to work on infrastructure projects which he says are desperately needed to attract new businesses.

“You to have an infrastructure that supports business and makes it attractive," Sharon said. "If you’re a manufacturer, you have to have good roads, good bridges, that’s what they look at.”

Sharon has always faced an uphill battle in his district where there are about twice as many registered Democrats than there are Republicans.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.