MAMARONECK, N.Y. – In his run for a seat on the Westchester County Board of Legislators, Thomas Murphy of Mamaroneck, says he seeks to restore faith in local government.
Murphy, who has lived in Mamaroneck for 23 years, previously served on the village Board of Trustees. He is running against Catherine Parker of Rye in the Democratic primary in the 7th District. Murphy debated Parker at an event hosted by the League of Women Voters earlier this month.
It was during his time as a trustee that he says he gained an appreciation for the diversity of Mamaroneck and Westchester as a whole.
“The Village of Mamaroneck and Westchester County have similar demographics. It’s very diverse. There are really great areas, and there are parts that aren’t doing so well. That’s a lot like Mamaroneck. When I found out that Judy Myers isn’t running for re-election, I thought I would be good fit. I thought I could use my skills as a previous member of the board of trustees,” he said.
As a resident of Mamaroneck, Murphy told The Daily Voice that his biggest concern is his observed lack of trust in local government.
“To me, one of the most pressing issues in every form of government is to restore peoples faith that the government works for them," he said. A lot of people think it’s a pay to play mentality. Venders contribute to elected officials and it t looks unseemly. There is an appearance of impropriety and people lose faith.”
If elected county legislator, Murphy said he intends to work on changing the ethics code to preclude elected representatives from accepting contributions from businesses.
“It’s about giving people back to the government and the government back to the people,” he said.
Also on Murphy’s priority list is Rye Playland – a controversial issue for the seventh district in recent years. He believes the county needs to keep Playland intact and have it run more efficiently, with the new children’s museum as an integral part.
“I’m not for handing Playland over to a company that doesn’t have any experience running a large park. People want to privatize it, cut it in half, and slowly kill Playland.”
Among Murphy’s concerns about the Playland project are how it will affect bordering neighborhoods and traffic. He said he was concerned for homeowners who will be disturbed by a larger, constantly operating Playland.
“I really don’t feel the plan has been vetted or the effects have been analyzed enough,” he said.
Murphy originally grew up in New York City and has three children.