November 6, 2015

Write-In Candidate Rich John ’81 Becomes Tompkins Representative

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Rich John ’81 confirmed Thursday that his write-in campaign successfully defeated Democratic opponent Elie Kirshner ’18 in the race to represent the fourth district on the Tompkins County Legislature.

John said Tuesday that he was unable to confirm the vote totals. On Thursday evening, he said he attended the official ballot-counting and confirmed that he had received a majority of the votes in Tuesday’s election.

Having officially secured his place in the legislature representing the fourth district, which encompasses Collegetown and the Commons, John expressed excitement for the task ahead of him.

“I have a lot to learn,” John said. “There is a budget vote next week, and I need to do a lot of reading.”

Speaking about Tompkins County overall, John said the proposed Tompkins County Energy Roadmap is one of his top priorities. The current proposal aims to cut the community’s greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent of 2008 levels before the year 2050, according to the Tompkins County website. The roadmap also identifies potential renewable energy sources and helps to define the role that proper management can play in reducing energy demand.

John also expressed a desire to focus to work on developing Collegetown’s capacity to support Cornell students during his term.

“Housing is certainly an issue for every student at Cornell,” John said. “Apart from that, I’m looking forward to hearing about what’s of concern to the students and moving forward from there.”