City councilman out of senate race; says mayor involved in “backroom deals”

Poughkeepsie City Hall

POUGHKEEPSIE – Common Council member Evan Menist, representing Poughkeepsie’s Second Ward has decided not to run for the newly-drawn state senate district 39.  Menist, the majority leader of the common council announced just over a week ago that he was considering a run for the senate seat.

In addition to serving on the city’s common council, Menist is the Legislative Director for Democratic State Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick, representing portions of Rockland and Westchester Counties.

Poughkeepsie Mayor Rob Rolison is the Republican candidate for the state senate in the district that covers portions of Dutchess, Putnam, and Orange counties.  If Menist had been the Democratic candidate, the two City of Poughkeepsie officials would have squared off in the November election.

In a Twitter announcement this past weekend, Menist said in part “The best way for me to serve my neighbors in Poughkeepsie is to continue on as Majority Leader of the Poughkeepsie Common Council in order to finish the fights I have begun against corrupt contracts and shady backroom deals made by our mayor…”

Menist attended the demolition ceremony of the former YMCA in Poughkeepsie on Monday and was asked by Mid-Hudson News to elaborate on his allegations of corruption and backroom deals at city hall.  “I said what I said,” he responded and declined to provide proof to substantiate his allegations.

Mayor Rolison brushed off the Menist statement. “These types of baseless partisan statements do not help or contribute to the work that needs to be done in this city,” he said.

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