On Thursday, June 27, 2013, Republican Wall Street veteran, John Burnett, announced his candidacy for New York Comptroller in front of NYC’s City Hall.
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Introduced by Edward Cox, chairman of the New York Republican State Committee, and Manhattan GOP Chair, Dan Isaacs,
Burnett then formally announced that he is ready to jump into the race.
WHO is JOHN BURNETT?
Republican John Burnett, 43, is a Harlem resident who went from working a cash register at Pathmark to overseeing wealth managers on Wall Street.
He is a member of the state GOP’s African-American Coalition and has most recently been an advisory board member of White Wolf Capital, a private firm specializing in “management buyouts, re-capitalizations and investments in leading middle market companies. Prior to that, Burnett worked with Platts, a division of McGraw-Hill, last serving as director of risk and compliance and spent 20 years as an auditor for major banks. This is John Burnett, the man now running full-time for Comptroller of NYC.
Burnett is more than qualified for Comptroller but Democrat enrollment in the city outstrips GOP registration by more than six to one, so Burnett likely faces an uphill fight for votes and donor cash in a race against Scott Stringer, the Manhattan BP who cleared the field after dropping down from the mayor’s race.
Burnett has blasted his Democrat rival, Scott Stringer, as:
” …unqualified for even an entry-level financial-services job.“The Democrat(ic) candidate for city comptroller is a career politician with absolutely zero business experience — he’s never had a job in the private sector. He’s not qualified to work as a bank teller, but he wants to manage a $130 billion pension fund.”
How important is Comptroller?
The New York City Comptroller is the Chief Financial Officer of the City of New York. The office requires a trustworthy professional that is independent and has experience in portfolio investment management, audit, compliance, contract administration registration and oversight, as well as matters that relate to the City’s operations and financial transactions.
The 4 primary roles of the Comptroller are to:
1. Oversee the management of the 5 New York City Pension Funds that are currently worth approximately 135 billion dollars;
2. Audit the City’s agencies with an independent view that is not subject to political influence, develop fiscal policy, implement corrective action plans for issues and ensure that the City’s contracts are compliant and fairly awarded to corporations, small businesses and individuals;
3. Organize, recommend and provide advice regarding the City’s 78 billion dollar annual budget; and
4. Manage a professional staff of approximately 700 employees. These employees include accountants, attorneys, economists, engineers, budget, financial and investment analysts, computer analysts, claim specialists and researchers in addition to clerical and administrative support.
” As Comptroller of New York City, I will execute my duties and responsibilities in an ethical manner to safeguard the financial health of the City. I will advise the Mayor, the City Council and the public in a transparent and timely manner.”
If Burnett makes it to the November vote for office of Comptroller,
“he vows to create jobs, to see that minority and women-owned businesses get a fair share of city contracts and to reform the public pension system.”
Regarding pensions, Burnett has also said, “My first experience as a ‘union guy’ was as the child of union-member parents”.
“My parents relied heavily on their pensions, especially later in their lives when they were challenged with heart disease and cancer. I will never forget that [as] comptroller, we are not just seeking a positive return on investments; we are investing for people like my parents and millions of New Yorkers’ retirement and well-being to secure their future in good health and in challenging times.”
According to his campaign website, one of his top priorities is:
investigating the cost-saving potential of merging the city’s five public-worker pension systems into one. As the father of a 19-year-old daughter, he also promises to create a more hospitable environment for small businesses in a city where black and Latino unemployment outstrips that of whites.
VIDEO OF PRESS CONFERENCE
Burnett’s professional record is an alphabet soup of qualifications, including experience in “operational controls for structured financing and investment products, mutual funds, unit trusts, annuities, CDOs, corporate and individual retirement plans, bank financing and investment instruments to include CDs, HELOC, corporate financing and cash management.”
Burnett takes pains to demonstrate that he’s not all about big money and says he stays engaged in the community through the Harlem chapter of his fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha, and as a member of the board of the Urban Resource Institute. Burnett also served as treasurer of the area’s subcommittee of The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Foundation. From his campaign website:
“Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.”— Frederick Douglass
To follow and support John Burnett’s campaign for Comptroller, you can check out these sites:
Burnett campaign site: http://johnburnett2013.com/
Burnett Face book page : https://www.facebook.com/JohnBurnett2013
Burnett campaign video: http://youtu.be/3RBgqSXdJ-I