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Assemblywoman emphasizes importance for federal judge seat to remain in Utica

Posted 9/1/22

Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon, D-119, Marcy, emphasized the importance for the U.S. Northern District of New York Judge seat to be located in Utica.

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Assemblywoman emphasizes importance for federal judge seat to remain in Utica

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Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon, D-119, Marcy, emphasized the importance for the U.S. Northern District of New York Judge seat to be located in Utica in a letter to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.  

David N. Hurd, who is 85 and currently serves as U.S. Northern District of New York Judge, has presided over a federal court in Utica for 23 years as a Utica resident.  

In August, Hurd rescinded his plan to take on senior status, which is a type of semi-retirement, after learning his replacement would be a Clifton Park resident, Jorge Alberto Rodriguez, age 43. 

A Tuesday, Aug. 30 letter from Buttenschon to Gillibrand — who nominated Rodriguez — read, “It is imperative that [Hurd’s] replacement and the court remain in Utica, New York. Utica is centrally located in the district and serves the surrounding area for so many that are in need of the federal court system.”  

Jess Fassler, chief of staff to U.S. Sen. Gillibrand, has previously said that it is the senator’s intention to ensure the judgeship remains in Utica.

“It has always been the expectation that Judge Hurd’s successor would sit in the Utica courthouse, and Jorge Rodriguez had committed to doing so,” Fassler said. 

Buttenshcon also highlighted Hurd’s lengthy career and the 23 years of experience that he can pass on to his successor.   

“I want to reconfirm the importance of including Judge Hurd as his non-biased knowledge and experience is imperative for the court, his replacement must be a local qualified individual and this court must remain in Utica to ensure the people are served by their federal judicial system,” Buttenschon said in the letter.  

On Wednesday, Aug. 24, Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. wrote a letter to Sen. Chuck Schumer, asking Schumer to get involved in the nomination process to “ensure the Mohawk Valley, Oneida County and the Greater Utica area not be forgotten.” 

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