Tensions rise in race for Saratoga Springs mayor

Saratoga County

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Three mayoral candidates are fighting for the opportunity to lead the city of Saratoga Springs as current Mayor Meg Kelly is vacating the seat. But disagreements between Mayor Kelly and one candidate are raising tensions.

A Saratoga City Hall meeting held on Tuesday night left many community members with a lack of transparency for local leaders after a heated exchange occurred.

Establishing a civilian review board was one of the major recommendations for developing police reform.

On Tuesday, that matter exploded into a heated back-and-forth exchange between Mayor Kelly and Public Safety Commissioner Robin Dalton, who is also running for mayor.

“I’m going to do it right. I won’t put in garbage in, garbage out,” said Mayor Kelly.

“If you are going to do it right, then where have you been the last 14 months,” said Dalton.

With election day on the horizon, other mayoral candidates Ron Kim and Heidi Owen West say with the constant hostility they want to bring change.

“We have to move forward, we need to continue with business, and we have to bring that professionalism back. This is not good for our citizens, and it does them a disservice,” said West.

“Trust has been broken both with amongst city council members and also among the community. You’re not getting that back, and the only way I think that will sort of happen is if there are new people or new faces,” said Kim.

Mayor Kelly called Dalton’s proposed civilian review board weak and had a lot of holes.

Dalton, who is running to replace Kelly, believes the board will be passed. 

“We began this process and put a vote in March to do this. I think its our obligation to see that work through,” said Dalton. 

“I want it to be passed, but I want to be done well,” said Mayor Kelly.

Dalton says she is working on a revised draft for city council to vote on at their next monthly meeting.

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