Massena Republican caucus challenged

The Massena Republican caucus has been called into question with an objection filed with the St. Lawrence County Board of Elections. Pictured during the caucus are Adrian Taraska, Patrick Facteau, Susan Bellor and Jeannine Brouse. Bob Beckstead/Watertown Daily Times

MASSENA — An objection was filed with the St. Lawrence County Board of Elections on Thursday, alleging that the Board of Elections did not receive proper notice of the Massena Republican caucus.

If that’s the case, it could mean the caucus was not valid and there would be no time to hold another one.

“At this point there wouldn’t be enough time. They would have to do either a write-in campaign or something of that nature because the last day is July 22 to hold a caucus. But you’d have to put a notice in at least 10 days prior. There isn’t enough time to hold another caucus,” St. Lawrence County Deputy Commissioner Gordon I. Ward said.

The required notices were published by local media for the two July 8 caucuses — one to nominate candidates for village mayor and the second to nominate candidates for town supervisor, town council, town justice and town clerk.

Whether that holds up or not will be determined next week.

“The commissioners are going to meet on Tuesday and rule on the validity of the caucus,” Mr. Ward said.

Republican Party Chair Susan Bellor disputed that the information hadn’t been sent to the Board of Elections.

“I followed all the procedures. Everything was done appropriately. I have proof of everything on paper,” she said.

During the caucus, Mrs. Bellor, who currently serves as a council member, was nominated for town supervisor, Newcomers Patrick Facteau and Adrian Taraska were nominated for town council and incumbent Jeannine Brouse was nominated for town clerk. There were no nominations for town justice or village mayor.

The Massena Democratic Party held its caucus this week. Town Supervisor Steven D. O’Shaughnessy and council members Samuel D. Carbone Jr. and Albert N. Nicola announced their intention to not seek another term.

Members nominated current village trustee Gregory Paquin for mayor, incumbent Joseph Brown for town justice and newcomer Kyle White for one of the two council seats. No nominations were made for town supervisor, the second town council seat or town clerk.

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