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Gatsas, Craig Clash in Mayoral Debate in Manchester

Paige Sutherland/NHPR
Mayor Ted Gatsas and Joyce Craig debate Wednesday at the Puritan Conference Center in Manchester.

The two candidates in Manchester's mayoral race talked education, opioid abuse, and taxes during Wednesday’s mayoral debate.

But the conversation mainly focused on the positives and negatives of the city.

Incumbent Mayor Ted Gatsas cast the Queen City in a good light – saying there's been progress in public schools, business recruitment and drug use.

Meanwhile Joyce Craig said there’s plenty of room for improvement. She suggested providing more internships for young professionals, and professional development for the city’s teachers. She also said the city needs to go after landlords who own notorious drug dens.

That set off one of the morning's tenser exchanges.

“You were an alderman for six years, six of my eight years you were an alderman – why didn’t you bring any of these ideas that you have been talking about forward when you were an alderman?” Gatsas asked. “You’ve had eight years as an alderman and eight years as a mayor and none of these ideas have come forward,” Craig replied back.

The two also butted heads on education reform and taxes - Craig criticizing the Mayor for not doing enough to improve the city's schools and Gatsas accusing Craig of supporting increased taxes. 

Gatsas and Craig face off again next week on NHPR’s The Exchange.

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