The two mayoral candidates in Manchester faced off for the first time Monday. Much of the debate between incumbent Mayor Ted Gatsas and Joyce Craig, broadcast on WGIR radio, focused on the city’s opioid crisis.
Craig said Gatsas was not doing enough to fight the problem, including getting more state money for the city’s Safe Station Program. Under the program people can walk into any Manchester fire stations and be connected with addiction services.
“The Mayor of Manchester needs to head to Concord and fight for resources that we need to make sure we are getting those dollars back to Manchester," Craig said. "Manchester taxpayers should not be taking the burden, we need to ensure we are providing those services but the state needs to take part in that,” Craig said, adding that a majority of people utilizing these services aren't from Manchester.
Gatsas says he's meeting with Governor Chris Sununu to raise that issue. He also said he meets regularly with those on the ground to discuss what the city can do to address this crisis.
“The most important issues we need to find right now is housing for those folks who are in drug court that I managed to get up and going and get funding from the state," Gatsas said.
The candidates also touched on taxes, school funding, and government transparency. The two will debate again on November 2nd on NHPR.