Assemblyman Steve Katz, (R, I — Yorktown), has announced he will not be challenging State Senator Greg Ball (R, C — Patterson) for the seat, and he would instead seek a second term for his seat in the Assembly.
"I regret that I cannot presently offer the voters of our district a clear voice in the State Senate that pursues the integrity, honesty and Republican principles that they deserve,” Katz said in a statement released to the media. "Instead, I will pursue these values and continue my efforts in the Assembly. I will continue to focus on issues that are important to all New Yorkers: lowering our taxes, fixing our economy, and creating jobs."
Katz told Patch there are family and health issues that have made him drop out of the GOP primary for the Senate seat.
"At this point for me to a do proper Senate campaign is more than my time would allow," he said.
Katz said he was proud to continue his work in the 99th Assembly district and called it a "pleasure" and a "privilege" to serve his constituents.
"I wish to thank my supporters for the unwavering loyalty and encouragement that they have shown me," he said in the statement. "I am humbled and motivated by their level of devotion. I will continue my fight to represent our values in the Assembly and hope to have the continued confidence of the hard working, long-suffering residents of our district."
Ball and Katz were allies and campaigned together until a recent fall out, including a dispute that resulted in Katz's protesting Ball sensoring a comment she left on his Facebook page. Katz in March that he would seek to unseat Ball.
Earlier this month, Senator Ball was endorsed by part leaders from the Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Republican County Committees.
"In tough times like these, when working families are really struggling, its vitally important that elected officials work together," said Joe Bachmeier, a spokesperson for Ball. "The Senator is focused like a laser on job creation and cutting taxes and looks forward to working with the Assemblyman, and all elected officials throughout the region, to do exactly that."
Republican Dario Gristina, of Putnam Valley, has already announced his plans to run for the 99th Assembly seat, while no Democrat has announced any intentions.
In response to Katz' announcement to run for a second term, Gristina issued the following statement:
"It's about time that Steve [Katz] has finally made a decision so that I know who I am running against and can now focus my efforts on removing him from office. Steve's lack offocus over the past six months and inability to decide what his future plans are, is exactly how he represents the 94th District. I intend to offer the Voters of this District an alternative; an Assemblyman who is focused on reducing taxes, focused on eliminating unfunded mandates to our towns and schools and focused on keeping the businesses we have left in New York."
For the Senate seat, Democrat , of Croton, has announced his intentions to run against Greg Ball.
"During his primary, Senator Ball mailed Republican voters bragging about his ultra conservative voting record – the most right-wing voting record of any State Senator," Wagner said in a statement following Katz' announcement. "I look forward to debating Senator Ball’s record of extremism and my positive vision of rebuilding New York’s middle class and restoring integrity to Albany."
will lose Bedford, much of its former section of eastern Dutchess County, along with western Putnam County. It will also pick up New Castle, as well as the town of Mount Pleasant, which includes the villages of Pleasantville and Sleepy Hollow.
On the state assembly side, the current New York State Assembly district 99, occupied by Katz covers Yorktown, Somers, North Salem, Carmel, Southeast, Patterson and Pawling. Under the redistricting, the district is proposed to become the 94th. It will cover a different amount of territory, adding Putnam Valley to its district and dropping North Salem and Pawling.