A majority of respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll favor Republican Cheryl Dinolfo in the 2015 Monroe County executive election.
Voters in Monroe County next week will choose the successor to Maggie Brooks as county executive. Brooks has held the position since 2004 and by law cannot run for another term.
Dinolfo was the pick of 53 percent of respondents. Democrat Sandra Frankel was favored by 44 percent. Rajesh Barnabas, who is running on the Green Party line, was the top pick of 3 percent.
Dinolfo was appointed county clerk in 2004, after Brooks—her predecessor in the clerk’s post—was elected county executive. Dinolfo won a four-year term in November 2004 and was re-elected in 2008 and 2012. Before she became county clerk, Dinolfo was a trial attorney and partner with the Rochester law firm Connors & Corcoran LLP, specializing in tort litigation.
Frankel, the first woman and Democrat elected Brighton town supervisor, served in that position from 1992 to 2012. In 1998, she ran as the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor. In 2011, Frankel unsuccessfully challenged Brooks. A licensed and credentialed speech language pathologist for 20 years, Frankel worked in health care and education before becoming Brighton supervisor.
Barnabas is a Rochester native who has worked as a youth outreach specialist at Charles Settlement House and as a teacher in the Rochester City School District. He currently is a producer and director with Rochester Community Television Inc.
Among just Democrats, Frankel was favored by 85 percent. Similarly, 84 percent of Republicans taking part in the poll favor Dinolfo.
The breakdown of poll respondents by political affiliation was Republican, 34 percent; non-affiliated, 31 percent; Democrat, 29 percent; Green, less than 1 percent; other, 5 percent.
As of Oct. 1, there were 422,794 registered voters in Monroe County, with the following party affiliations: Democrat, 39.4 percent; Republican, 29.2 percent; Green, 0.3 percent; non-affiliated, 24.2 percent; other, 6.9 percent.
The plurality of poll respondents—38 percent—say economic development and jobs is the top issue in this year’s race, closely followed by fiscal management and taxes. Sixteen percent say integrity and ethics is the top issue.
Roughly 840 readers—93 percent of whom live in or pay Monroe County property taxes—participated in this week’s poll, conducted Oct. 26.
If the 2015 Monroe County executive election were held today, whom would you favor?
Cheryl Dinolfo: 53% Sandra Frankel: 44% Rajesh Barnabas: 3%
In your view, what is the top issue in the Monroe County executive election?
Economic development and jobs: 38% Fiscal management and taxes: 36% Integrity and ethics: 16%
Education: 4% Public safety: 2% Child care: 2% Other: 2%
What is your political affiliation?
Republican: 34% Non-affiliated: 31% Democrat: 29% Other: 5%
The clear choice is Cheryl Dinolfo; past accomplishments as county clerk, law degree, youth, platform, etc. Please, folks, think before you vote and make Monroe County a better place to live.
—Ted Voll Jr.
I succeeded Sandy Frankel as Brighton Town Supervisor, and I worked with Sandy for many years in Brighton. I support Sandy for Monroe County executive based on her record of financial management. When Sandy took office, Brighton’s finances were in serious disarray. Under Sandy’s leadership, Brighton’s finances were strengthened tremendously, Moody’s raised Brighton’s credit rating to AA2, a very high rating, and the town’s budget process was made transparent with direct citizen involvement. Sandy’s experience and her record in Brighton will serve Monroe County taxpayers well because today, Monroe County is the most fiscally stressed county in the state, based on criteria uniformly applied by the state comptroller to every county in the state. In addition, Monroe County’s budget is only presented after Election Day, when it is too late for voters to express their opinions at the ballot box. Sandy has the experience of restoring Brighton’s fiscal stability as Brighton’s CEO and she saw to it that town budgets were approved before Election Day, a process that I have continued. Today, Monroe County needs a CEO with the experience of running the financial and budgetary affairs of government. Only Sandy Frankel has that experience.
—Bill Moehle, supervisor, Town of Brighton
Frankel’s promise to not increase property taxes is a laugh, since Democrats have been agitating for years to increase property taxes. If Frankel is promising to do what Republicans are already doing, why not vote for the Republicans?
Although I do believe both Democratic and Republican candidates are qualified, I believe the Republican candidate is more in tune with what the county needs to bring back fiscal responsibility. I do not believe the independent candidate has the experience necessary.
—J.A. DePaolis, Penfield
I will be voting for Sandra Frankel.
There are three issues that are important to me: 1. taxes, 2. taxes and 3. taxes. Which of these candidates can hold the line? Moreover, in a state with the highest taxes in the nation, who can reduce them? Any business person could figure out how to make government more efficient and less costly. Heck, I’d volunteer my time if I thought anyone would listen. Reflexively, I am inclined to think a Republican will be more likely to reduce taxes. Is that true in this race? I have no idea.
—John Calia, Fairport
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