After months of campaigning and 18 hours of polling, nothing has been decided in the race for the town of Whitehall’s top administrator’s position.
Unofficial results have the race between Democrat Richard “Geezer” Gordon and Republican George Armstrong too close to call, with Gordon leading by a six-vote margin of 492-486.
Results remain unclear in the race for town councilman as well. While incumbent Republican David Hollister holds a comfortable lead, earning 592 votes from the registered voters of the town, former Councilman Richard LaChapelle, a Democrat, holds an 11-vote lead over the current town supervisor, Republican Vernon Scribner, by a count of 563-552.
According to the Washington County Board of Elections, 40 absentee ballots were issued for the Nov. 3 election, and it has so far received 23 back with a postmark of on or before Nov. 2.
“I’m happy with the results,” said Gordon after the results were announced at the Pavilion town offices on Nov. 3. “We will now go to the absentees and whoever wins, wins. I expected this to be a close race.”
“The judge was a very popular and effective judge for the community,” said Armstrong about his competitor. “Oh, yes, I expected a close race. It was a decent turnout for the election and now we go back to getting ready for next year and see what happens when the absentee votes are counted.”
In the race for councilman, Scribner said he probably could have done more to get out the vote on his behalf.
“I think that this shows that it pays to get out and campaign and that it pays off to put signs out,” said Scribner, who added that interest in the 2009 election surpassed any election he had previously seen.
“We got a good turnout,” he said. “There was more interest this year than any other that I have been in.”
LaChapelle said that he was confident with the vote, but would wait until the final votes were counted.
“I’m glad a lot of people got out and voted,” said LaChapelle. “We’ll see what happens when they count up the absentee ballots, but I am pleased with the way that it went.”
Hollister, who gained the most votes in the councilman race, said he was honored to win.
“It shows that the people of Whitehall feel I’m going in the right direction,” said Hollister. “I’ll try to continue to work for the people to show them my appreciation and do the best job for them that I can.”
Democrat candidate for councilman George Enny received 416 votes.
For the races still to be decided, absentee ballots will be counted by the Washington County Board of Elections no sooner than seven days after the General Election. Results may also be delayed by the Veterans Day Holiday, which falls on the Wednesday after the election when ballots are usually counted.
In the race for town highway superintendent, incumbent Republican Louis Pratt scored a 715-338 win over Democrat Robert Juckett.
“It showed that people like what we have been doing,” said Pratt.
In the race for town justice, the current village justice, Democrat Julie Scott, received 670 votes, while Republican Thomas Nichols will join her on the bench with 444 votes. Democrat Richard Juckett received 361 votes in the race for justice, while Republican Theresa Billado received 275 votes.
In the race for Dresden town councilman, independent candidate Wayne Barrett received 112 votes while incumbent Republican Joanne Farley received 85 votes to win the two seats up for grabs. Republican Arthur Borin received 70 votes, while Democratic candidates Carl Sobeck and George Gang received 61 and 33 votes, respectively.
Town supervisor Robert Banks received 105 votes in an unopposed bid for the position.
Don Sady received 150 votes in an unopposed bid for the position of town supervisor, while David Perry (162), John Mashak (147) and Herbert Sady (140) were elected to the town board. Francis Baker received 108 votes to return to the position of town highway superintendent.
County District Attorney
In the race for the position of Washington County district attorney, incumbent independent candidate Kevin Kortright stayed in office, earning 5,640 votes against 5,161 received by Republican challenger Robert Winn.