Tag Archives: Gian Jones

Working Families Party backs State Senate hopeful James Sanders


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/photo by Terence Cullen

The Working Families Party (WFP) today officially endorsed State Senate hopeful and Councilmember James Sanders for the 10th District, with just more than a week until primaries and in the wake of incumbent Senator Shirley Huntley’s arraignment.

“On the City Council, James Sanders has proven himself to be a forceful advocate for the issues that matter most to working class New Yorkers,” said WFP Deputy Director Bill Lipton. “He’s stood up to predatory lenders and fought for quality public schools for all our children. His energy and passion for working families’ values will be a welcome addition in Albany.”

The party had not given an endorsement for the primary up to this point, a spokesperson said.

Sanders is running against Huntley and Gian Jones in a September 13 Democratic primary. Following Huntley’s arraignment for accusations that she covered up the funneling of nearly $30,000 in state money, Sanders called for his opponent to exit the race and vacate the senate seat she has held since 2007.

The councilmember, whose tenure in the council expires next year, said if elected, he would work for the middle class and working families.

“I am proud to have the support of my friends in the Working Families Party, and look forward to continuing to build our coalition of middle-class New Yorkers who want their voices heard in Albany,” Sanders said. “It’s time for leadership that understands the plight of working families and fights tirelessly on their behalf. With the help of middle class New Yorkers from throughout the 10th Senate District, I look forward to being that voice in the State Senate.”

State Senator Shirley Huntley pleads not guilty to conspiracy and tampering charges


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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State Senator Shirley Huntley pleaded not guilty to three charges relating to a Long Island nonprofit after turning herself in this morning.

The southeast Queens politician helped cover up nearly $30,000 in public funds steered from Parent Workshop, Inc. to the senator’s aide, Patricia Savage, and to the senator’s niece, Lynn Smith, according to the indictment.

The nonprofit was provided with funds with the promise of providing programs for parents on the workings of the New York City public school system.  Savage and Smith were indicted in December.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said that when Huntley learned of the probe into her niece and aide, she penned a false backdated letter stating the nonprofit conducted workshops that never took place.

Huntley is charged with the tampering with physical evidence and falsifying business records in the first degree, and conspiracy in the fifth degree, a misdemeanor.

“Falsifying documents, conspiracy and deliberately tampering with an open investigation are serious crimes. The individuals who schemed to profit at the taxpayers’ expense and cover it up will be held accountable,” said Schneiderman.

If found guilty, Huntley would be removed from office, under the New York State Public Officers Law.

The two-time incumbent faces a fiercely contested primary in less than three weeks against Councilmember James Sanders and Gian Jones.