JAMESTOWN – The Democrat candidate for New York State’s 57th Senate seat said he plans to bring fresh new ideas to the district.
Austin Morgan, the 22-year-old political newcomer from Freedom, New York, said if elected to office one of his top priorities will be to address poverty in the district.
“The district faces many issues and so does the state as a whole,” said Morgan. “As a young person, I watched all of my high school and college friends leave the state because they could not find the opportunity that they needed.”
The candidate said there is a direct correlation between poverty, jobs and people moving out-of-state.
“It is now or never, we are at a breaking point that if we do not change what we are doing. Our populations are going to continue to decrease at an alarming rate,” said Morgan. “One of the things that is most important is jobs, of course, so one of the initiatives I put forth and will be putting out more concrete polices soon is a companion program to the Excelsior Scholarship.”
Morgan said the state needs to set up a program for students who want to go into the trades, as well.
“The state needs to be investing in trade programs,” said Morgan. “College is not for everyone. The state needs to be investing in the future of kids not only going into college but the trades.”
Morgan said he would push to be on the committee for children and families along with the education committee.
“I think what I bring to the table is what’s missing from Albany, perspective from the future,” explained Morgan. “We need to give people a hand up. ”
The Democrat said he hopes voters take a moment to get to know him as a person and not just vote based on their partisan politics.
“This is a chance for our district to say, let’s try someone new, let’s step out of the political boxes, let’s try a different perspective, someone with new ideas, someone with energy and let’s send them to the majority where downstate politicians haven’t heard voices like ours,” said Morgan.
Morgan is expected to graduate from Cornell University in June with a Bachelor’s Degree in human development. He is also the co-president of Cornell Productions, a student-run company that designs venue layouts for events.
The candidate also worked with special needs students as a substitute teacher and teacher aide. In 2018, he was a session assistant and legislative analyst for State Sen. Leroy Comrie (D) from Queens.
The 57th State Senate District includes Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany counties and part of Livingston County.