Political candidates invited to discuss issues at Bay Terrace forum

AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall
By Phil Corso

Key races affecting voters throughout northeast Queens will be at the forefront later this month when the Bay Terrace Community Alliance hosts a Meet the Candidates Night forum.

The forum, scheduled for Oct. 23 inside the Bay Terrace Jewish Center, at 13-00 209th St., at 7 p.m., currently has an agenda that includes candidates running for Congress, U.S. Senate, state Senate, state Assembly and even the office of president of the United States.

Bay Terrace Community Alliance President Warren Schreiber said the forum would be open to the public, so any interested voter could attend. Invites were sent out to all candidates running for public office, including President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and their Republican challengers, presidential hopeful Mitt Romney and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the vice presidential candidate.

Though it is unlikely they will attend, Schreiber said the candidates also have the option of sending a surrogate to the candidate forum.

Candidates will be allotted time for both opening and closing statements, Schreiber said, and would also field questions from alliance members in attendance.

As for the U.S. Senate race, invitations were sent to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and her Republican challenger, Wendy Long. Rep. Steve Israel (D-Hauppauge) and opponent Steven Labate were also invited along with other party candidates in the race to speak at the forum.

In the race for the 11th District in the state Senate, Schreiber said invites were sent to Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) and his Republican opponent, Joe Concannon.

Assemblyman Ed Braunstein (D-Bayside) was also invited, but will be running unopposed in November’s general election for the 26th District.

The candidate forum will also feature former City Councilwoman Melinda Katz, who will perform the national anthem at the event.

Reach reporter Phil Corso by e-mail at pcorso@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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