Vote 2017: Democratic mayoral candidates

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NEW YORK -

Voters will cast their ballots in a few short weeks on a number of races in the borough, including the race for mayor.

News 12 is breaking down where the Democratic mayoral candidates stand on three key issues: housing, police-community relations and immigration.

Incumbent Mayor Bill de Blasio is in the running for a second term in office. When it comes to housing, the mayor touts the passage of two consecutive rent freezes and a plan to require that developers build affordable housing.

As far as police-community relations go, de Blasio says he's expanding neighborhood policing and the NYPD's body-camera program. The mayor also has a plan to close the jail on Rikers Island, a controversial issue during his term. For immigration, the mayor says he will continue to protect the personal information of New Yorkers who have IDNYC cards.

No stranger to politics, Sal Albanese, a former City Council member, is another Democratic candidate for mayor in the primary race. To tackle housing issues, Albanese says he wants to focus on preserving and building more affordable housing and add supportive housing for seniors, veterans, the homeless, disconnected youth and domestic violence survivors.

When asked about police-community relations, Albanese says also wants to expand community policing and make sure all precincts have enough officers to maintain patrol strength.

The issue of immigration hits home for Albanese, who actually immigrated to the United States from Italy at age 8. He says the first thing that immigrants need is jobs, and he wants to help by creating a small business advisory council.

From Brooklyn, candidate Richard Bashner points to his work as a community board member and commercial attorney. On housing, Bashner wants to create new supportive, mixed-use communal facilities to economically house, feed and provide services to seniors, people with disabilities and homeless families. He also wants to expand funding for affordable housing.

Bashner wants to rethink the approach to how communities and the police interact. He says one of the most important steps to improving relations is to end the current bail system.

On immigration, Bashner says he will stand up to the policies of President Donald Trump and will ensure that all New York City employees are trained on how to protect immigrants who interact with city agencies.

Also in the running for mayor is Bob Gangi, who has been an activist in New York City for decades. On housing, he says the city must provide truly affordable housing for all New Yorkers, especially the homeless and low-income residents. He also wants to  create a New York City land bank, which will oversee the use of vacant city-owned lots to create more affordable housing.

With regard to police-community relations, Gangi wants all NYPD officers to cease arrests and handing out summonses for low-level infractions, such as evading subway fares. Also, he plans to plan to decriminalize sex work and marijuana use.

On immigration, Gangi wants to reallocate resources for legal assistance for anyone facing immediate threat of deportation.

Mike Tolkin is also vying for the top spot in New York City, having worked in a range of industries over the years. On housing, Tolkin wants to implement a homeless rehabilitation program, called NYC Life, instead of building more shelters, and he wants to replace the system entirely.

It's the same idea when it comes to police-community relations. Tolkin also wants to rethink the entire system, strategy and approach to policing with new training, equipment and techniques.

On immigration, Tolkin wants to empower the city's immigrant communities by defending and protecting their human rights and investing in their education and assisting with their acclimation.

Primary Day falls on Tuesday, Sept. 12. Come November, the winner of the primary will face Republican candidate Nicole Malliotakis and other third-party contenders.

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