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Forsythe runs for his former St. Lawrence County legislative seat


LISBON — David W. Forsythe, a former St. Lawrence County Republican legislator, is running for his old District 2 seat.

Republican Legislator Mark H. Akins, Lisbon, has decided he will not seek re-election for the seat.

Mr. Forsythe was a one-term county legislator before Mr. Akins. Mr. Forsythe opted not to seek another term on the county Board of Legislators so he could wage what turned out to be an unsuccessful challenge for the Assembly seat held by Addie J. Russell, D-Theresa.

Recent commercials by county Democratic legislators touting their accomplishments as the board’s majority persuaded Mr. Forsythe to run again if Mr. Akins stepped down.

“It’s time for a substantial change,” Mr. Forsythe said. “I’m coming from a business experience.”

Democrats have been running a series of commercials that focus on what they view as their achievements, such as lowering county property taxes, moving past partisan politics, supporting bass fishing and recreational trails, and working with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on a bypass for Canton and Potsdam that will become Interstate 98.

“I see those commercials and it just makes me want to gag,” Mr. Forsythe said. “You can thank them for bringing me back.”

Mr. Forsythe described himself as a fiscal conservative who does not follow a straight party line.

“I’m not just a Republican,” he said. “I’ll vote what I think is right.”

Mr. Forsythe said the Democratic-led board makes bad decisions, such as the process it took to close the Certified Home Health Agency. It turned down an $80,000 offer for the operating certificates, then turned around eight months later and closed the agency, receiving nothing.

The board is not frugal enough for Mr. Forsythe.

He pointed to the hiring of Wladis Law Firm to represent the county’s interests in Albany for $60,000 per year plus expenses and fees as an example. Elected representatives should be enough, he said.

“Hiring a lobbyist, that’s ridiculous. Show me what they’ve done,” he said. “Now, with this new sales tax revenue, how’s it going to be spent?”

The Forsythe File

Age: 50

Education: Graduate of Ogdensburg Free Academy, 1981. Attended SUNY Canton in computer science.

Employment History: President of Wilder-Forsythe Insurance since 1989. He joined his father’s insurance company in 1987 after working in construction for several years and now runs the agency with two brothers. He helped found Basswood Lodge, a hunting preserve in Rensselaer Falls. He is a partner in Jones Insurance Agency and Santamont Insurance Agency.

Party Affiliation: Republican

Political History: In 2006, Mr. Forsythe was the unexpected winner for the Republican nomination for the District 2 seat when he beat Lisbon Supervisor Roger A. Watters more than 2 to 1 and then went on to win the position over Democratic candidate Russell J. Finley. Mr. Forsythe ran against Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell, D-Theresa, in 2010, but she beat him with ease.

Family: Wife, Paula W. Children, Joshua D., 23; Alysha M., 25, and Hunter D., 16

Place of residence: 564 Murphy Road, Lisbon

Place of birth: Ogdensburg

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