New York State Senator Slammed For Jamaica Trip

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CaribWorldNews, ALBANY, NY, Weds. Mar. 3, 2010: It is not just New York State Governor David Patterson who is getting the heat in Albany. So too is State Senator Antoine Thompson.

Thompson is facing criticism over a trip to Jamaica, West Indies, in the midst of the state senate`s budget debate last week. Thompson reportedly flew to Jamaica last week with his chief of staff and the Jamaican American Association of Buffalo and Sister Cities Organization, according to his office.

His office says the trip to St. Ann`s Parish, Jamaica was to build upon existing relationships and examine opportunities for partnership in commerce, renewable energy, education, tourism, and healthcare.

However, local Tea Party activist, Rus Thompson, said the senator`s trip was ill-timed and questioned who foot the bill.

`$1500 a week for a hotel room and his campaign contributors pay for it?`  Thompson questioned. `Is this what campaign money is to be used for? Who paid for the airfare? Who paid for the food and beverages? Who? Campaign contributors or the taxpayers?`

Thompson is a Democratic New York State Senator who represents the state`s 60th Senate district, which includes parts of Buffalo and Tonawanda, the City of Niagara Falls and the Town of Grand Island. Thompson previously served for six years as the Masten District councilman in the Buffalo Common Council.

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