An Oneonta insurance claims manager active in county civics has announced his candidacy for the 121st district seat in the state Assembly, which covers Madison County and portions of Otsego and Oneida Counties.

Dan Butterman could run against veteran Assemblyman Bill Magee, D-Nelson, for the Democratic nomination in a June primary.

Magee was in session in Albany on Monday and could not be reached for comment on whether he would seek re-election.

The winner could face Republican John Salka, a former Brookfield town supervisor and Madison County board chair, who is making his third bid for the seat. No other Republicans have announced their candidacy.

Now in his 14th term, the 78-year-old Magee is the longest-serving assemblyman in central New York. He is also chairman of the Assembly's Committee on Agriculture.

“I fear that failure to invest in the future of our economy today means that our next generation of upstate New Yorkers will find it harder and harder to stay,” Butterman said in his media release announcement, going on to name education, economic development, infrastructure, environmental protection and sustainability as key issues.

Butterman, who works for NYCM Insurance, is a current member of the Oneonta City Schools Board of Education, the board of directors of Opportunities for Otsego, and the Oneonta Concert Association. He was the lead organizer for 2017's TEDxOneonta and TEDxOneontaWomen events held in September and October, which brought citizens together to share ideas and stories.

He is a former member of the Town of Oneonta Planning Board, and also teaches courses on negotiation and organizational behavior at Hartwick College.

In other Assembly news there will be several special elections in April.

Among 11 special elections set for April 24 by Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday is the 102nd district Assembly seat, vacated by Pete Lopez, R-Schoharie, on his appointment to Region 2 Administrator for the Environmental Protection Agency this fall.

The district represents a seven-county region including Mid-Hudson, Northern Catskills, Southern Tier and Capital District. Lopez is to oversee environmental protection efforts in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in his new role.

Erin Jerome, staff writer, may be reached at (607) 441-7221, or at ejerome@thedailystar.com. Follow her on Twitter at @DS_ErinJ .

*story changed at 7:00 a.m. Feb. 5 to reflect that Magee has not yet announced if he will seek re-election.

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