Despite being involved in a virtual dead heat for Yorktown supervisor, Democrat Don Peters said he expected to sleep well knowing he was ahead.
Unofficial results from the Westchester County Board of Elections – 2,301 to 2,299 – with 37 of 43 town election districts, or 86 percent, in the three-way supervisor race against incumbent Susan Siegel.
The lead switched several times between Peters and Grace in the course of the evening, while Siegel may be headed for a defeat.
Peters’ slim lead and town clerk Alice Roker’s uncontested bid for another term were the lone Democratic bright spots in town races.
Councilman James Martorano, a Democrat, was turned out of office after 20 years of service on the town board. Town justice Ilan Gilbert, also a Democrat, was denied an opportunity to extend his five years on the town bench after his Republican opponent Gary Raniolo took the lead.
First-timer Richard Campanero, a Democrat, was rejected in his initial bid for a town board seat as voters returned Conservative and GOP candidate Nick Bianco for another term. Voters also chose Bianco's runningmate, restaurateur Dave Paganelli, who was leading all four town board candidates with 3,647 votes.
The Yorktown Republican Party now holds a 3-2 town board majority.
"We knew going in it was a tough year for Democrats," Martorano said as the results showed him and Campanero falling steadily behind the Republicans.
Asked by Patch about the highlights of his two decades on the board he cited the preservation of 3,200 acres of open space, new playing fields, the town’s strong financial condition and an effort to treat everyone with civility and respect. Looking ahead, Martorano said he hoped to be of service to the town in other ways. He offered his congratulations to Bianco and Paganelli.
Gilbert said he saw his defeat as part of a political trend. When asked about his years on the bench, he cited the and the implementation of a modernized filing system.
"It was a pleasure serving the town, and I think I left the court a better place than when I arrived," he said. Gilbert wished his opponent well with the court’s workload, and added that the new justice "will have his work cut out for him."
Perhaps forseeing the outcome, councilman Martorano issued the following statement Tuesday evening:
Congratulations and thank you to all the wonderful citizens of Yorktown who came out to vote today in solid numbers.
Special thanks go to the candidates and campaign workers who participated in today’s election. Thank you for caring, for believing in the democratic process, for putting time, sweat and effort on behalf of your particular party or candidate.
My kudos goes out to all parties including my Republican counterparts. For in the final analysis our enemy is not each other, it is apathy; it is not heated debates but the fact that the rooms they are held in are virtually empty; our enemy is not contentious courtesy of the floor comments but rather the silence of none at all.
For in order for our Democracy to work it must be truly vibrant. What we must always cherish is not winning and losing but the free exchange of ideas which should be done with civility, respect and humanity. These have always been my personal guiding principles.
So tonight we celebrate our extraordinary democracy. This evening especially we must remember that we are ALL YORKTOWNERS. Irrespective of the outcome I sincerely applaud all the candidates who have sacrificed so much so that we can exercise our democratic right to choose our leaders.
There are no losers tonight!