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McMahon defends Micron video county Democrats say is a campaign ad paid for with ARPA funds

Screengrab from Ryan McMahon Micron Video Feb 2023_converted.mp4 by MMG Production
Ryan McMahon Micron Video Feb 2023_converted.mp4
Screengrab from Ryan McMahon Micron Video Feb 2023_converted.mp4 by MMG Production

[Update 5/16/23: The video has been removed from the Onondaga County website but you can still view it here.]

Democrats on the Onondaga County Legislature are calling a video embedded on the county’s website, nothing more than a campaign ad for Republican County Executive Ryan McMahon. Democratic floor leader Chris Ryan also decries the fact that the almost $6,000 video was paid for with federal ARPA funds and has asked that it be taken down and the county be reimbursed by McMahon.

McMahon claims the video is not a political ad and said attorneys ok'd it.

“The county attorney sent a letter to the legislators who voted against Micron, letting them know that they vet everything we did and the video is completely appropriate and it’s a marketing video," McMahon said.

The eight-minute video documents how Onondaga County lured a $100 billion Micron computer chip project to central New York, almost exclusively focusing on McMahon’s part in it.

“To politicize the biggest win our community has ever had for a video that was done in October," McMahon said. "The video clearly highlights the bipartisan relationship we had with Gov. Hochul and specifically Sen. Schumer and his unique role in this story, if it was a campaign ad, they wouldn’t be in it.”

Only Schumer's name is mentioned in the video. Gov. Kathy Hochul and Micron executives are seen in video footage from the Micron announcement.

McMahon is running for his second full term as County Executive.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.