Richards, Warren Debate Ahead of September Primary

Rochester, NY--Incumbent Mayor Tom Richards and Challenger, Lovely Warren squared off in a debate Thursday night ahead of their September 10 democratic primary.

Education, the economy, and public safety topped the topics debated between the two candidates.

Warren said as far as education and schooling goes, she wants to give parents choices.

"I support helping city schools charter or private schools number one reason people leave Rochester is because of school systems," Warren said.
On the other hand, Richards wants to bring education back to the basics.

"The basics are learning to read in third grade, extending Pre-K, and giving kids more opportunities."

Each were asked about public safety and the performance of Rochester Police Chief Jim Sheppard. Richards responded saying, "Chief Sheppard is doing a good job. I'd keep him right where he is."

Warren did not say if she would keep Sheppard as chief. She said safety depends on where you live while also taking a jab at her opponent.

"I see this because I walk in our neighborhoods everyday. I don't just sit in city hall and assume that things are ok."
Her attacks didn't end there.

"Some say I lack experience and they're right. I have no experience in selling one of Rochester's most trusted companies, taking a $10 million pay out, and laying off hundreds of people. I have experience in city government and leadership."

Richards didn't address Warren's claims.

"If you look at the people who support me, I have managed to work with people all across the spectrum. How are we gonna reform schools if you cant work with teachers? We have to do that."

The Primary Election is September 10th.

The winner faces Green Party candidate Alex White in November's General Election.

The debate was sponsored by WROC and the League of Women Voters.

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