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Buffalo mayoral candidates discuss issues in forum, Mayor Brown no-shows

Posted at 11:15 PM, Jun 10, 2021

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Thursday night, Western New Yorkers got some insight on who may be the next mayor of the City of Buffalo.

Two of the three candidates participated in the League of Women Voters of Buffalo/Niagara’s Democratic Primary forum. Absent from the forum was current Mayor Byron Brown. India Walton and Le’Candice Durham did participate.

Due to technical difficulties the Zoom forum was kept short, but you can watch the entire forum by clicking on this link.

The two candidates did share their opinions on how to make Buffalo safer form gun violence.

“I want to be able to provide those resources, such as jobs, schooling, education,” explained Durham.

India Walton looks to mirror programs in Stockton, California.

“People who are involved in gun violence are identified. They are given mentorship. They are given a life map. And as they reach milestones, there are financial incentives and that has reduced gun violence in Stockton, California by almost 30%,” explained Walton.

When it comes to poverty in the city, both say a good place to start is having people who work for the city, live in the city.

“Folks who are not invested in the Buffalo community, they come in, get their checks and they drive it out to the suburbs at the end of the day,” said Walton.

“If we start turning a lot of these vacant lots into some affordable homes, will be able to push and bring city employees back into the City of Buffalo,” said Durham.

Mayor Brown's campaign released a statement explaining his absence from the forum.

"Mayor Brown has always welcomed the opportunity to publicly discuss the issues that are important to the residents of the City of Buffalo. He does this every day in a variety of forums. Mayor Brown has always been forthcoming and transparent on where he stands on every issue, ensuring that the public can fairly and objectively decide for themselves who best represents all of the members of our community."

The primary is June 22nd.