2017 Election

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

Monroe County Democrats held their convention Thursday night. 

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren got the party's endorsement on the first ballot, but the battle to secure the nomination isn't over yet. Warren is expected to face a September primary from former Monroe County legislator and city police chief James Sheppard and former TV journalist Rachel Barnhart.

The local Democratic Party has seen divisions within the committee in recent years, and Warren said in her remarks that Democrats need to unite to defend values now being challenged in Washington.

Monroe County Republicans held their nominating convention on Monday night, and the committee unanimously backed incumbent Sheriff Patrick O’Flynn to seek a 5th term.

He will face Todd Baxter, who used to be a Republican, but says he switched his party registration to Democrat last week, and will be that party’s nominee to run this fall. Baxter most recently headed up the Veterans Outreach Center, but spent more than 20 years in law enforcement including with the Rochester and Greece Police Departments.

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

A longtime local member of law enforcement has made it official…Todd Baxter is a candidate for  Monroe County Sheriff.

The  announcement happened in Greece on Saturday at the Airport Marriott.

Baxter made the announcement before a crowd that including a host of well-known local Democratic politicians, including Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle and County Clerk Adam Bello.

Todd Baxter, who recently left a position with the Veterans Outreach Center in Rochester after a long career in law enforcement, is expected to announce on Saturday that he is a candidate for Monroe County Sheriff.

Speculation about his interest in the seat now held by Republican Patrick O’Flynn has been heating up since Baxter left his position as executive director of the Veterans Outreach Center last month.

Prior to his three-year stint at the VOC, Baxter was Greece Police Chief for four years and also served more than 20 years with the Rochester Police Department.

He says Rochester is experiencing “a legacy of failed progressive Democratic philosophies.” So how would Republican mayoral candidate Tony Micciche change that legacy if elected to Rochester’s top spot? His campaign is focused on Rochester City schools, what he calls “wasteful” and “redundant” business regulations and a public safety plan intended to reduce crime and improve police-community relations among other issues. The candidate in the race for Rochester mayor and Monroe County Legislator Tony Micciche joins this edition of Need to Know to make his case.

He’s the only Republican contender in the fight for Rochester’s next mayor. And he calls this election a “battle of philosophies.” Why Monroe County Legislator Tony Micciche believes he’s the only candidate who will bring real change to this city. He makes his case on this edition of Need to Know.

Also on the show, we look into what’s driving hate speech, religious bigotry, and racial violence. How can communities like Rochester respond? We’ll hear about a community effort to bring tolerance to our neighborhoods and our nation.

And we’ll meet one of the brilliant minds in our local medical community researching rare diseases to help find treatment and a cure.

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren has effectively clinched the nomination of the Monroe County Democratic Committee.  That happened following a meeting of the 27th Legislative District on Wednesday night.

She won enough votes in the last committee vote to put her ahead of Democrats James Sheppard and Rachel Barnhart.

The official nomination won’t happen until the Democratic Party Convention on May 18th.

He says he’s one of us and he’s the American dream. Monroe county legislator Tony Micciche joins the program to talk taxes, jobs, education and what it will take become the first Republican mayor in more than 40 years in the city of Rochester. Our conversation with this year’s mayoral candidates continues on Need to Know.

Jason Milton / WXXI News

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren outlined accomplishments and goals during her third state of the city address Monday night.

The speech took place in a building owned by CGI Communications on Main Street, which is part of the company’s expansion efforts…and that downtown location was a big reason why Warren held the event there, to tout the construction and activity that has been increasing downtown.

She told the crowd of a few hundred people that she is following through on her campaign pledges of nearly four years ago.

You may have heard a relatively unfamiliar name now in the race for Rochester’s next mayor. It’s Lori Thomas. The former teacher says she’s not a party politician, but a public servant who, if elected, will make the city prosperous. And, like some of her competitors in this race, she’s got a plan. A plan for turning vacant lots into homes for veterans. A plan for empowering the lives of seniors. And a plan for improving the lives of city youth. We hear from Lori Thomas on this edition of Need to Know.