HARDENBURGH, NY — Election vote counts have been finalized but officials won’t know whether the town Highway Superintendent position will be filled on an elected basis at an annual salary of $1,000 or at a higher salary if winning candidate Mark Wilbur chooses to be appointed.
Results from Ulster Board of Elections officials found that Livingston Manor resident Mark Wilbur won the position with 72 write-in votes over Salvatore Amendola, who received 16 machine votes. But residents also voted 75-27 in favor of a proposition to have the position filled by appointment rather than through an election. Because there was no effective date of the change on the ballot language, however, it is unclear if Wilbur will be taking office on Jan. 1.
“The proposition was supposed to take effect Jan. 1, 2024,” Supervisor Wendy O’Reilly said. “It says that in the local law that we passed.”
Ulster County Board of Elections Commissioner John Quigley said in October that the absence of a date on the ballot makes it unlikely the voters’ decision will be upheld until the term of the next superintendent ends in two years.
O’Reilly said she plans to talk with Wilbur, who apparently only recently moved into the town, to see if he would be willing to be appointed to the position rather than being elected to it.
Other results in the election included:
• O’Reilly won an uncontested race for supervisor with 86 votes. There was only one write-in vote for the position.
• Four-year terms for Town Board seats were won by Sherry Shaver with 95 votes and John C. Fairbairn with 55 write-in votes.
• A two-year term to fill a Town Board vacancy was won by Douglas O’Dell with 85 votes. There were four write-in votes for another candidate.
• A four-year term for justice was won by Douglas McFadyen with 63 write-in votes. There were five write-in votes cast for other candidates.