Primary elections are typically calm in comparison to the general election that follows, but Schenectady County primaries this year are nothing to balk at.
Rotterdam tops the list with nearly every major party ballot line to be decided during the primary. The general objections also topped in higher than normal according to officials from the Schenectady County Board of Elections. Although, specific objections are required after a general objection if someone wishes to try to invalidate a candidate’s petition. Mostly all of the remaining specific objections were expected to be received by the end of the day of Tuesday, July 26. There are at least six specific objections filed for races across the county.
“A petition when we receive it is presumed valid … and we will only count (the signatures) when there is a specific objection,” said County Board of Elections official and County Democrat Party Chair Brian Quail. “This years general objection volume was more than all of the years of my being a [board of elections member] combined up until now.”
Robert Godlewski, current Deputy Supervisor of Rotterdam, and incumbents Anthony Jasenski and Angelo Santabarbara are seeking the Democrat endorsement for two seats in District 4 of the Schenectady County Legislature. The County Democrats endorsed both incumbents, but Godlewski is making a bid.
For Town Supervisor of Rotterdam there is an opportunity to ballot for the Democrat line with Harry Buffardi and a write-in line. For the Conservative line though, Frank Del Gallo and Buffardi will have a primary.
On the town level of Rotterdam there is four people bidding for the two Democrat Town Board ballot lines. The party endorsed Wayne Calder and Mike Viscusi, but Delores Doriguzzi and William Cooke are also vying for a ballot line.
There is a Conservative Party primary for Rotterdam Town Board seats between Wayne Calder, Mike Viscusi and Todd Koza. Also, there is a Conservative primary for Town Highway Superintendent between Larry Lamora and Vincent Romano. For Town Justice, Kevin Mercoglan and James Bradshaw will square of in primaries for the Conservative, Independence and Republican ballot lines. There is also an opportunity to ballot for Working Families Party endorsement with Romano and a write-in line.
“The Rotterdam primary situation is unprecedented,” said Quail. “The numbers of primaries across the landscape is also substantial.”
Outside of Rotterdam elections there are some primaries, but not the same volume of contested ballot lines.
In Niskayuna there is an opportunity to ballot for the Conservative lines of Town Supervisor, two Town Board seats and Town Clerk. The Conservative endorsed candidates for those lines include Joe Landry for Supervisor, Julie McDonnell and Liz Orzel Kasper for Town Board and Michele Martinelli for Town Clerk. There would be a write-in for each candidate against the endorsed picks.
“Whenever there is a primary for public office, there is always write-in opportunities,” said Quail.
For the County Legislature District 3 seat, covering Glenville, Niskayuna and Scotia, there is an opportunity to ballot for the Conservative line against Cathy Gatta.
The county Board of Elections is reviewing all specific objections filed to determine if any candidate will be removed from a potential ballot line.
“It is part of the process and what really matters is whether or not specific objections come in,” said Quail.