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Fred Akshar and Barbara Fiala debate in Endwell

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By Donnie Dwyer.
After a flood of campaign ads from the two candidates looking to replace Tom Libous in the State Senate, people at the Endwell Rotary Tuesday got to see Barbara Fiala and Fred Akshar up close and without a filter.

"That's why the people deserve a strong and energetic voice, to fight for things that are important," said Fred Akshar.

"I'm curious what strong and energetic voice. He has always thrown jabs at my age. I will tell you, If elected, I will do whatever it takes to show you my energy," said Barbara Fiala.

"When she was Broome County Executive, property taxes rose by 33% and four thousand jobs lost," said Akshar.

"Never was that increase at 33 percent, that's called fuzzy math. Also, I didn't give myself two raises, we have legislatures who vote on raises," said Fiala.

Members of the audience voiced their concerns during a Q&A that got heated.

"We need more mental health services. I would like to have your comments, thank you," said a member of the audience.

"It's an issue of a lack of bed space and a lack of information and a lack of information on the topic and I wish you would educate yourself on the issue. We do have these facilities in place," said Akshar.

"Not a facility that is capable of taking care of every patient," said Fiala.

Both candidates do agree on one thing -- making sure the Southern Tier gets the attention it deserves to bring in more jobs and focus on the economy.

"Let's pick the people up who can be employees, create an opportunity for them but also those that are being left behind because of the serve poverty," said Fiala.

"You're seeing billions of dollars being invested in Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochetser, and the time has come for the state government to pay attention to what's in the Southern Tier," said Akshar.

***In Endwell, Donnie Dwyer, Fox 40 HD News***