CATSKILL — The Republican Party retained control over the Greene County Legislature in Tuesday’s elections, highlighted by a clean sweep of all four seats in District 1 Catskill.

As of Wednesday, Republicans hold a 12-2 majority on the legislature, identical to the last term.

All election results are unofficial until certified by the Greene County Board of Elections.

In Durham, Republican incumbent Patty Handel got 389 votes to the 253 cast for Democratic challenger Brenna Rustick. In Coxsackie, Republican incumbents Thomas Hobart and Charles Martinez were running unopposed, while Legislature Chairman Patrick Linger also ran unopposed in New Baltimore.

Republican incumbent Greg Davis (604 votes) defeated Democratic challenger Randall Schmollinger (264 votes) in District 4, while Republican incumbent Ed Bloomer ran unopposed in Athens.

In a rare bright spot for Democrats in Tuesday’s balloting, Democratic incumbent Harry Lennon secured another term representing Cairo on the legislature, while Republican candidate Sherry B. True won the legislative seat vacated by William Lawrence. Democratic candidate Daryl Legg also emerged victorious in District 7.

Catskill Republican incumbents Michael Bulich, Jack Keller, Matthew Luvera and Linda Overbaugh each earned fresh three-year terms on the legislature, defeating Democratic challengers Monique Chestnut, Doreen Davis, Jeffrey Friedman and Neva Wartell in the Catskill race.

Bulich, who secured 1,557 votes, said he was gratified that Catskill voters gave the four Republican candidates their seal of approval for three more years on the council.

“The legislature has worked hard and we’ve done some good things over the past three years,” he said. “We’ve got much more to come, especially with development in Catskill. I think the voters chose the right people.”

Bulich, who will enter his third term, said he was excited that all four Republican candidates retained their seats.

“I was very happy for all four of us to return,” he said. “If any of our local Democrats are like the national party and what they’re doing in Washington, then I don’t think it’ll be good for Greene County.”

Bulich said a top priority for him is local development in the community, specifically the Exit 21 project. Greene County hopes to develop hotel properties on a five-acre site on Route 23B in a plot of land adjacent to Exit 21 on the New York State Thruway.

“We’ve also got some potential infrastructure spending,” he said. “The county received a ton of money from the America CARES Act and we’re going to be designating that and we have to be careful with that and make sure we get the best bang for the buck. We want to make sure it’s truly spent on something that will last for generations here and will be able to be used by the people of the county.”

Overbaugh, who notched 1,490 votes in Tuesday’s balloting, earned her fourth term on the legislature with her win.

“One of my biggest priorities is the Exit 21 project in the east and the west,” she said. “We’ve got some exciting things going on for the west side of the Thruway. Obviously we completed the jail and that’s been a wonderful thing. There’s a lot to do.”

Overbaugh said she was thrilled all four GOP incumbents will continue to represent District 1.

“We’ve been working really well as a team and we’ve got a lot on our agenda,” she said. “It’s nice to have the same people to work with rather than trying to start all over again.”

Republican Legislator Matthew Luvera earned 1,608 votes to seal another term on the legislature representing District 1.

Legislator Jack Keller (1,380 votes) secured his second term on the council with his victory on Tuesday.

“I’m very excited and I’m very much looking forward to improving on what I was able to accomplish in my first term as Greene County legislator,” he said following his win. “I look forward to working with a unified board and to proceed to make District 1, Catskill and Greene County to progress into the future. I congratulate everyone that won and everyone that ran and did not win. Because if you care about our community and our county, then take the step and run for office.”

Keller said dealing with COVID-19 is still one of his top priorities heading into his second term.

“The virus is still an issue,” he said. “It’s been flaring up and has potential to flare up again. That’s a major issue that we still have to pay attention to.”

Keller noted that the legislature was proactive with handling the origins of the COVID-19 crisis over a year and a half ago.

“A lot of people don’t realize how active Greene County was when the Covid pandemic first came out,” he explained. “The first Sunday of March (2020), we called an emergency meeting and every single school superintendent from the county was there and we discussed what the plans were as far as our children go. It was very successful.”

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.