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Video available: debate on metropolitan form of government for Onondaga County

March 24, 2017

The Campbell Public Affairs Institute hosted the first public debate on a metropolitan form of government for Onondaga County at the Maxwell School on April 12, 2017. 

The debate provided a lively direct exchange among the speakers, as well as opportunities for audience questions. The audience voted on the issue both before and after the event and the results are as follows:

Pre-debate: 108 For; 98 Against; 9 Undecided
Post-debate: 85 For; 127 Against; 1 Undecided

Video Archive

The debate was covered by local media outlets.

CNY Central: " Community takes firm stance in consolidation debate " Miner & Antonacci vs. Walsh & Byrne: 7 takeaways from the Consensus debate"

WSYR-TV: " SU's Maxwell School hosts Consensus debate" and " Consensus pros and cons weighed at debate


“This House Would Establish a Metropolitan Form of Government for Onondaga County”

The principal recommendation of the Final Report of the Consensus Commission on Local Government Modernization is to establish a new municipal form of government for Onondaga County, with a single executive and a 33-seat legislature. While public forums and town hall meetings have been held to discuss the report, and the proposal has been both criticized and defended in the media, missing is a direct exchange between opposing views, with opportunities for challenge and rebuttal. Moderated by Campbell Institute Director and WRVO Campbell Conversations Host Grant Reeher, this debate will provide that exchange.

Arguing in favor of the proposition were two members of the Consensus Commission:

James Walsh, Government Affairs Counselor, K&L Gates LLP, former Member of Congress [R-NY-25]

William Byrne, Chairman of the Board of Byrne Dairy

Arguing against the proposition:

Stephanie Miner, Mayor of the City of Syracuse

Robert Antonacci, Onondaga County Comptroller

This Campbell Debate is part of an ongoing series sponsored by the Campbell Public Affairs Institute of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.



Communications and Media Relations Office
500 Maxwell Hall