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Broome County Legislators Attend Town Hall Of Our Lives

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BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -

Nearly 70 people attended 'Town Hall of Our Lives' at The United Presbyterian Church of Binghamton this Saturday. Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, County Executive Jason Garnar, and District 13 Representative Bob Weslar talked with community members about current gun reform legislation and future endeavors to curb gun violence. 

Today's forum was part of a larger movement, where over 100 town halls were held throughout the nation. The Broome County High School Democrats of America organized today's discussion. President of the organization and high school senior Benjamin Reynolds said the town hall was important for representatives and their constituents to better understand the issue of gun reform. 

“I think it was good that we had people who wanted to ask questions and that they got answers. I think it’s really important that we have this open dialogue with our officials and that we can be comfortable asking a question and they can be comfortable giving us an answer, even if they don’t have the complete answer.” - Benjamin Reynolds, Broome County High School Democrats of America

Just two weeks after Binghamton's March for Our Lives rally, community members continued to push for change after the marchers were long gone. They shared stories and questions with Lupardo, Garnar, and Weslar, and discussed issues of mental health and improving school resources. 

"This may be something that started with students concerned about schools, but this is a neighborhood issue and we have to address it that way. We want to put as many resources as we can into schools that have shortages. And we want to make sure kids have plenty of things to do after school, like Promise Zone and other programs that provide services for children." - Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo

Notably absent from the discussion was Congresswoman Claudia Tenney, who gained controversy last month for her Tweet on mass shootings. For community leaders and the three legislators on the panel, today's forum was an important opportunity to gain a different perspective. 

“They want to talk to their federal representatives and those candidates that are running, those who are serving to make sure that they’re paying attention. To make sure that a national solution really has to be coming forward and the funding that goes behind it as well." - Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo