T he village board received a vote of confidence Tuesday as voters re-elected both incumbent candidates.
Republican Ken Bartholomew and Democrat Walter Sandford defeated their opponents and will return in their roles as village trustees.
Bartholomew garnered the most support, receiving 153 votes, while Sandford had 135. Fellow Democrat Jim Putorti finished with 119 votes and Republican challenger Ron Rushia was a distant fourth with 32 votes.
The results were unofficial and were to be validated by the Washington County Board of Elections on Wednesday, but commissioner Jeffery Curtis said he did not believe there were enough absentee ballots to change the initial results.
After the tallies were announced, Bartholomew expressed some relief.
“I’m happy with the results. It’s one less thing to worry about,” he said.
Despite being elected to his third term, Sandford expressed some surprise with the results.
“I thought there was going to be some turnover this time,” he said.
“I’m happy to be back and I’m going to put my heart back into it and continue the work we’ve started.”
Sandford and Bartholomew’s time on the village board has mirrored each other. Both were elected to the board in 2008, re-elected in 2010 and then again this year.
“You feel a little conflicted because he belongs to the other party, but I’m happy for Ken,” Sandford said. “He does a great job and is good for the village.”
The few people who lingered in the Skenesborough firehouse until the results were announced were pleased with the results.
Jack Hoagland, leader of the Rec. Center, said he was happy to see both incumbents re-elected to office.
“Now isn’t the time for change,” he said, adding that both candidates have done a good job during their time in office.
Don Williams, Department of Public Works superintendent, also said he was happy that both candidates would return.
Sandford and Bartholomew will rejoin Mayor Pete Telisky and trustees Marjorie Mohn and Michael LaChapelle on a very cohesive board.
There will be little time to savor the victory though. The board is scheduled to meet this evening at 6 p.m. to finalize its budget and will hold a public hearing on the budget and an organizational meeting on April 2.
According to election officials, 237 people turned out to vote Tuesday, down from 416 last year, but comparable to the election in 2010. There are approximately 1,400 registered voters in the village. Most who were in the firehouse Tuesday evening said the turnout was about what they had expected.