On Tuesday, September 9, 2008, New York State will hold its primary elections. Here in Manhattan, the Democratic Party will pick its candidate for Surrogate Court Judge. There is no Republican candidate, therefore the choice of the Democrats will become the next Surrogate Court Judge. I will be voting for NYS Supreme Court Judge Milton Tingling for Surrogate Court Judge.
What is the Surrogate Court?
Surrogate Court is the Trusts and Estates court for New York State. In each NYS county, the Surrogate court hears cases involving the estates of those who have died. It also handles adoptions and related matters. In every county in NYS except two, one judge hears all Surrogate cases for that given county. In Manhattan and in Brooklyn, there are two judges in the Surrogate Court. They answer to no one and have no oversight beyond themselves. These judges choose which attorneys will administrate certain estates, and they also play a large role in determining the future of the estates of those who die without a valid will. In Manhattan, the dollars that come through the Surrogate Court are in the billions of dollars, and who serves in this position without oversight is crucial.
Why Vote for Milton Tingling?
- Judge Tingling is the only candidate running who has judicial experience
- The other two candidates are being pushed forward by law firms and power brokers in order to attempt to stop the anti-corruption reform of the Surrogate Court that Judge Tingling has pledged to undertake
- Judge Tingling will open up the court to ordinary people, ensure that for the first time translations are available for those who do not speak or understand English, and establish an Upper Manhattan satellite location to bring trusts and estates information to a larger number of people
Others who have looked at this race have come to the same conclusions that I have. Judge Tingling is our best (only) hope for reducing the corruption in the Surrogate Court and making it accessible to the people of Manhattan. See the links below for the thoughts of others.
Friend of Manhattan Seeking Re-election in Brooklyn
A quick note about a Friend of Manhattan. Brooklyn State Senator Kevin Parker is facing a tough primary battle on Tuesday. He has served admirably as the Minority Whip in the State Senate, and he has stood up for Manhattan's interests on numerous occasions.
He bested his opponents in a recent debate.
Manhattan Viewpoint encourages anyone in the 21st Senate District in Brooklyn to support Senator Kevin Parker, and we hope that Manhattanites with friends and family in that district will encourage their loved ones to vote for Kevin Parker on Tuesday. Though he represents Brooklyn, he improves lives in Manhattan through his work on behalf of Brooklyn. We'd like to see our friend back in Albany fighting for us.