LOWVILLE — There are 14 village and town offices throughout Lewis County that have no candidates to fill them after the deadline for party line petitions passed Thursday, but there are some offices that will have both primary and Election Day battles.
“There are a few good races shaping up, but the real story this year is that there are so many positions without any candidates,” Democratic Commissioner of the county Board of Elections Lindsay Burriss said. “It’s more than I’ve seen before.”
Tax collectors and council members are the majority of positions that have no candidates so far. The towns each have two council positions up for election this year, but five towns have only one candidate that filed petitions under one of the major political party lines.
The offices that are still without candidates include:
— Harrisburg: Clerk/tax collector and councilperson
— Leyden: Tax collector and councilperson
— Lyonsdale: Supervisor, tax collector and councilperson
— Montague: Councilperson
— Osceola: Tax collector
— Pinckney: Councilperson
The villages of Lyons Falls and Port Leyden also each have two trustee positions to fill on their boards with no candidates.
The biggest race of the year in the county is likely to be that of the District 10 legislator position being vacated by long-term legislator Jerry King.
Lawrence Hoffert of Port Leyden and Jeffrey Nellenback of West Leyden have both filed petitions to become the candidate for the Republican Party and Conservative Party, indicating primaries are likely to be held in June to determine who will be on the November ballot and on which line.
Bethany Munn of Lyons Falls is seeking to be the Democratic Party candidate for the office.
District 7 Legislator Gregory Kulzer of Martinsburg will defend his seat once again against challenger Josh Leviker of Turin while District 5 incumbent Legislator Richard Chartrand is up against Erik Griffin in another repeat race between the two.
On the town level, Denmark has potential battles for a number of positions which will lead to Republican primaries.
The town currently has the only competition for supervisor through the designating petitions. The current supervisor, James Der, is being challenged for the Republican Party line by current councilman Scott Doyle.
Denmark also has four petitions filed for the two available council spots this year, all under the Republican ticket: incumbent Peter Jones, Darlene Rowsam, Keith Lee and Scott Simmons.
Dennis Mahoney is striving to best sitting Highway Superintendent Pat Mahar for the Republican nomination for the office this year, although only Mr. Mahoney also submitted signatures for the Conservative Party and Democratic Party.
Democrat Derek Gage is challenging incumbents Yvonne Boliver and Larry Boliver, who are both Republicans completing four-year terms on the town of Croghan board.
In Diana, a Republican Party primary is likely to be held as trustee Zachary Smith is joined by challengers Allen Bango II and Kelly Ritz in their bid to fill the two trustee positions up for grabs this year.
Democrat Terry Widrick and two Republicans, current councilperson Joseph Aucter, and Thomas Schantz, have submitted petitions in New Bremen for the two available councilperson positions.
Two Republicans and a Conservative candidate are vying for two positions on the Osceola Town Council. Incumbents Vickie Carpinelli and Randy Reynolds, both Republicans, are being challenged by Mark Rayome on the Conservative ticket.
A primary will be held in Watson to decide between three Republican candidates for the council: two incumbents, Jeffrey Hoch and Franklin Merry, and challenger Vicki Roy.
The clerk position in the town of West Turin is sought by Bethany Schindler and Mary Wilton who will compete in the primaries for the Republican ticket.
Ms. Burriss said it’s not too late for people to run for any of the open positions that can be found on the Board of Elections page on the county website, www.lewiscounty.org.
Petitions to run independently without a party can be passed around for signatures beginning on April 13 and must be filed with the elections board between May 18 and 25.
Primaries will be held on June 22 with the general election to follow on Nov. 2.
For more information about running as an independent candidate, call the county Board of Elections at 315-376-5329.