We begin with another look at one of the contested races for Binghamton City Council this Fall.
The 2nd district covers the far western portion of the city and features a rematch from one year ago.
Democrat Dan Livingston defeated Republican Sophia Resciniti last Fall in a special election to complete the term of Joe Mihalko who gave up the seat when he was elected Broome County Clerk.
Livingston grew up in Oxford and has lived in the 2nd district for the past 11 years.
When we interviewed him last week, he was in the process of purchasing a home in the district.
Livingston says the major issues facing the city are a lack of decent, affordable housing, blight, concerns over public safety and the delays and cost overruns on the Sewage Treatment Plant project.
Livingston, who helped to start the VINES Urban arm in Binghamton, was an AmeriCorps worker with CHOW and is a trained mediator, says he has a passion for community service.
He currently works as a consultant for farmers and agri-business.
He says his training in mediation helped to make him a good listener.
“How to hear people, how to listen to people, how to facilitate better communication. I think that’s the other thing that I bring to the table is that I see it as my job to help guide people through the bureaucracy inside City Hall, how to avoid the red tape,” says Livingston.
Sophia Resciniti represented the 2nd District seat in 2018 when she was appointed to the seat by the Republican party to replace Mihalko.
She and her family immigrated to the U-S in the 1980’s from Greece.
Resciniti is a social worker at Binghamton University, her husband Paul owns Resciniti Dry Cleaners and together they have 4 children, the youngest being a senior at Binghamton High School.
Resciniti says quality of life issues such as blight, crime, taxes and infrastructure are the most important to voters.
She was active in her children’s schools and was a member of the Red Cross mental health team that responded to our area’s great floods and the massacre at the American Civic Association.
She’s currently on the board of the Children’s Home, Family Planning of South Central New York and is a member of Broome County’s Community Health Assessment Committee.
Resciniti says she’s deeply invested in the community.
“This community has given me the opportunity to have a good life through hard work, to me to my husband and to my children. And I want to make sure that this continues for the next generation. That’s why I want to do it. It’s definitely challenging at times, but it’s so important that I’m more committed than ever,” says Resciniti.
Resciniti says that as a mother, a social worker and an immigrant, she’s well-suited to advocate for the marginalized and under-privileged.
Livingston says he’s looking out for his constituency by trying to make the workings of City Council more transparent by videotaping work sessions and posting them to the web.