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The Tie Goes to Which Runner?

December 27, 2005

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What would happen if the upcoming Village of Croton-on-Hudson election, being held on March 21, 2006, resulted in a tie?

Last year, the Village of Irvington was faced with a simmilar outcome in a Mayoral race between Dennis Flood, the Republican incumbent who had held office, unchallenged, for 12 years and Democtratic opponent Erin Malloy. Ultimately, the vote counting exercise went to state Supreme Court and the Appellate Division in Brooklyn on an appeal by GOP-funded attorney John Ciampoli. After eight months of legal maneuvering, the Appellate Court decided to allow the Village to settle the matter with a toss of a coin. On October 27, 2005 at Town Hall, before residents and media, a chance victory was awarded to Dennis Flood.

In an apparent effort to plan for like circumstances, on December 19, 2005 at the regularly scheduled Village Board of Trustees meeting, the board passed a resolution to hold a public hearing for January 3, 2006 to consider enacting legislation that gives way to a run-off election in the event of a tied vote tally.

Additionally, the Village Board of Trustees has put forth Local Law Introductory No. 5 of 2005 for a vote by the Board after the public hearing. If adopted, this new law which outlines a procedure for a run-off election held within ten (10) days after a final certification, would go into effect on January 13, 2006.

Whether the law will be considered after the public hearing by the Board on January 3, 2006 is unclear. During the Village Board meeting, held on December 19, 2005, Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt said ” I think we have lot to discuss on this, uh, correct? I mean this is just a proposal. This comes in light of the fact of what happened in Irvington, uh, with the tie. And it just gives the municipality a few more options. But I think, Ms. Stecich had a few questions as to what we are doing in there. So we wll dicuss that. Tonight is really just calling for the public hearing.”

Trustee Charlie Kane added, “My major question is the cost to residents to run another election”.


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