ALBANY - More than 25 candidates vying for State Senate and Assembly seats on Long Island were omitted from a government reform survey led by former New York City Mayor Edward I. Koch, records show.
Koch, through his good-government group New York Uprising, released lists Thursday of how candidates responded to his call for legislative district boundaries to be drawn by a nonpartisan commission, tougher governmental ethics rules and a better budget process.
Candidates were asked to sign pledges. Koch labeled those that did "heroes of reform" and non-signers "enemies of reform."
On the Island, all 30 incumbents were polled but only 16 of 42 challengers were. Newsday determined the number of challengers based on records from the Nassau and Suffolk election boards and news articles.
Of those covered by Koch's survey, five did not sign pledges - all Assembly Democrats.
Asked about the omissions, Koch said Friday they were unintentional and due to limited staff and money. There's still time for the overlooked to embrace his agenda, he said.
"We did the best we could to find out who was a challenger - but we are doing it on a shoestring," he told Newsday. He said New York Uprising has two paid employees and $120,000 in the bank. "If we didn't reach out to them, they should have reached out to us," he added, citing publicity about his reform Albany initiative.
Some candidates were taken aback by Koch's comments.
Democrat John Capobianco of Farmingdale, running against Assemb. James Conte (R-Huntington Station), said he twice phoned Koch's group only to get the brush-off. "In a press release, they said they contacted every candidate. No, they didn't," said Capobianco. He promised to consider signing.
George Sava, the Woodmere lawyer seeking to unseat state Sen. Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre), signed Friday morning after reading news reports. The Democrat wasn't upset at being overlooked. "I agree with what . . . [Koch] is trying to do."
Koch plans to work for the defeat of those who haven't signed. Next month, he'll hold events in Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse, and hopes to come to Long Island. He wants to raise $280,000 to buy campaign advertising.
WHO SIGNED AND WHO DIDN'T
Incumbent Kenneth LaValle (R) - signed
Challenger Regina Calcaterra (D) - signed
Challenger Greg Fisher (D) - signed
Incumbent John Flanagan* (R) - signed
Incumbent Brian X. Foley (D) - signed
Challenger Lee Zeldin (R) - signed
Incumbent Owen Johnson* (R) - signed
Incumbent Carl Marcellino (R) - signed
Challenger Lawrence Silverman (D) - signed
Incumbent Kemp Hannon (R) - signed
Challenger David Mejias** (D) - signed
Challenger Ethan Irwin** (D) - signed
Incumbent Craig Johnson (D) - signed
Challenger Jack Martins (R) - signed
Incumbent Charles Fuschillo* (R) - signed
Incumbent Dean Skelos (R) - signed
Challenger George Sava (D) - signed
Incumbent Marc Alessi (D) - signed
Challenger Daniel Losquadro (R) - signed
Incumbent Fred Thiele Jr. (I) - signed
Challenger Richard Blumenthal (R) - signed
Incumbent Dean Murray (R) - signed
Challenger Robert Calarco (D) - signed
Incumbent Steven Englebright* (D) - signed
Incumbent Ginny Fields*** (D) - signed
Incumbent Philip Ramos*** (D) - did not sign
Incumbent Michael J. Fitzpatrick* (R) - signed
Incumbent Phil Boyle* (R) - signed
Incumbent Andrew Raia* (R) - signed
Incumbent James Conte* (R) - signed
Incumbent Robert Sweeney* (D) - did not sign
Incumbent Joseph Saladino* (R) - signed
Incumbent Charles Lavine (D) - signed
Challenger Robert Germino (R) - signed
14th District (open seat)*
Dermond Thomas (D) - signed
Incumbent Michael Montesano* (R) - signed
Incumbent Michelle Schimel* (D) - did not sign
Incumbent Thomas McKevitt (R) - signed
Challenger Thomas Devaney (D) - signed
Incumbent Earlene Hooper*** (D) - did not sign
Incumbent David McDonough* (R) - signed
Incumbent Harvey Weisenberg (D) - did not sign
Challenger Jeffrey Toback (D) - signed
Challenger Joshua Wanderer (R) - signed
21st District (open seat)***
Notes: *challenger in the November general election not contacted by New York Uprising, **some candidates in the September primary election not contacted, ***some candidates in both the primary and general elections not contact. Data is as of 5:30 p.m. Friday.
- Compiled by James T. Madore