There’s a new County Executive in Rensselaer County.
There’s a new mayor in Saratoga Springs.
Incumbent mayors in Rensselaer and Albany are reelected.
There’s an upset in Niskayuna.
Voters say no to a constitutional convention, and the question of how to govern Saratoga Springs going forward is too close to call.
That pretty much sums up Tuesday's election, with Republican Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin declaring victory last night over Democrat Andrea Smyth in the hard-fought Rensselaer County Executive's contest.
“This battle took place in May, we persevered, I am so proud of the fact that we ran nothing but a positive campaign.”
McLaughlin adds “We are going to continue to build, and we are gonna continue to grow, and we’re gonna continue to succeed and make people’s lives better.”
McLaughlin says he has faith in the future of the county.
“Rensselaer County has so much going for it, we have the waterfront, we have 787, we have 90, we are so perfect and situated, and we are going to grow this county, I guarantee it, we’re gonna modernize, we’re gonna grow the county, we’re gonna bring prosperity here.”
At the end of the night, McLaughlin had less than a thousand vote lead over Smyth, but absentee ballots were not expected to impact the results.
In Saratoga Springs, Democrat Meg Kelly was an easy winner in the mayor's race, defeating Mark Baker, 54 to 46%.
“I will make Saratoga the best that I can. I will work hard for this city that I love.”
However, the question of a charter change in Saratoga is still too close to call.
With all ballots counted, those who favor a council-manager form of government have only a 48-vote margin at the moment.
There are about 500 absentee ballots yet to be counted.
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan easily wins a second term.
Incumbent Dan Dwyer wins another term in Rensselaer.
In Colonie, it's a 6th term for Town Supervisor Paula Mahan, who defeated Republican Frank Mauriello by about 21-hundred votes.
She was asked about the landfill issue.
“As far as landfill issues, there was a lot of misinformation out there, the landfill is doing well, the landfill operating agreement allowed us to maintain ownership of the landfill, and it actually saved the town from bankruptcy.”
Mahan adds “We’ve got a lot of things in the works. We’ve got major infrastructure plans. We have upgrades to our parks that we’ve been working on. We’re improving out library. We’ve got all kinds of things going on.”
One issue that came up during the campaign was traffic congestion.
Mahan says there's a lot of misinformation about this, and says the town is attempting to keep things under control.
“We’re in a location that went in the middle of four major other locations and municipalities, you can’t stop people from coming through your town.”
There was an upset, meanwhile, in Niskayuna, where political newcomer Yasmine Syed defeated 10-year incumbent Supervisor Joe Landry by more than 700 votes.
Statewide, New Yorkers are fine with the state constitution as it is.
Voters soundly rejected a proposal to call a convention to look at making changes to the state's political blueprint.
Voters did approve a measure to allow judges to strip pensions of public officials convicted of a felony related to their duties.
The third issue, dealing with land issues in the Catskills and Adirondacks also passed.
One other election note to add.
About 200 absentee ballots from Albany's 11th ward will be opened in court.
This comes in the Common Council race between Alfredo Balarin and Judd Krasher after elected officials raised questions about the number of absentee applications from people who said they had no intention of being out of town on Election Day.
Krasher lost to Balarin in the primary, but still had the Independence Party line.
Balarin had 59% of the vote at the end of the night.
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