MORAVIA | John Katko doesn't have the drapes picked out yet, but he knows where his Cayuga County office will be located if he beats U.S. Rep. Dan Maffei in November.
At a town hall meeting Tuesday night, Katko, R-Camillus, was asked whether he would keep a district office in Cayuga County if he is elected to represent the 24th Congressional District.
"I already have it picked out, so yes," he said.
Katko said his Auburn district office, if he wins, will be located in what was the Crosman Building, which is now home to the Galbato Law Firm. The building is located at the corner of Genesee and North streets in downtown Auburn.
The Republican challenger took a swipe at Maffei, D-Syracuse, who has a district office located at 30 Dill St. in Auburn. He claimed he's "never seen lights on" in Maffei's Auburn office.
"We're going to have staffed office there, we're going to listen to people and listen to what you have to say," he said. "And by the way, I'm going to be in that office, not just around election time like (Maffei's) doing now. I'm going to be in that office from the moment I get elected to the moment I get re-elected or get sent packing."
Maffei opened his Auburn district office shortly after taking office in 2013. The office, which has at least one full-time staffer, is open Monday through Friday.
Along with his Auburn office, Maffei also has full-time district offices in Oswego and Syracuse.
Cayuga County Clerk Sue Dwyer, who moderated Katko's town hall meeting, said having a district office in Cayuga County is important for constituents who need assistance from their congressional representative.
Dwyer used the lack of a Social Security office in Auburn as an example. The city previously had a Social Security office, but it closed in 2007. Up until a few years ago, satellite office hours were held at the Boyle Center. But when budget cuts were made, the satellite office hours ended.
With no Social Security office or staffers in Auburn, residents can turn to their congressional representative's local office for help, Dwyer said.
"Any federal agency, you can get assistance when you go to a congressman's office," she said.