Republicans win 16 out of 17 seats on Catt. Co. Legislature

Cattaraugus County Legislator Frank Higgins, R-Olean, and Olean Alderman Kelly Andreano, R-Ward 2, celebrate their wins to represent District 8 in the county Legislature on Tuesday.

LITTLE VALLEY — Republicans appeared to have captured all but one of the 17 Cattaraugus County Legislature seats, based on incomplete election returns Tuesday night.

“We’ve done very, very, very well,” Cattaraugus County Republican Party Chairman Robert Keis Sr. said about an hour after the polls closed.

Going into the election, Republicans controlled 12 of the 17 County Legislature seats.

“We won all three seats in Olean and picked up two in Allegany,” Keis said.

Kelly Andreano, Frank Higgins and Rick Smith were the GOP winners in District 8, which includes the city of Olean.

Unofficially, Andreano received 1,499 votes; Higgins received 1,396; and Rick Smith, 1,164. Democrats Adam Jester received 1,145 votes; John Crawford, 1,139; and Gerard leFeber, 870. A more complete picture of vote totals were not available for Conservative Party candidate Brin George or Libertarian Matt Peterson-Volz, but those reported to the Times Herald were far below those of the Republican and Democratic candidates.

In District 6, Republicans Robert Parker and Donald Benson, both of Allegany, topped Democrats Barbara J. Hastings and incumbent Vergilio “Dick” Giardini.

In District 7, Republican incumbent Joseph Snyder and Republican Kip Morrow of Portville were all but unopposed.

At 10:30 p.m., Republicans were still unsure whether they’d won one seat in Salamanca.

“It looks like it’s going to be a Republican night,” groaned Cattaraugus County Democratic Party Chairman Frank Puglisi. “We’re going to end up with one Democrat on the County Legislature.

Puglisi spoke from Democratic headquarters in Salamanca at the Holy Cross Club after the polls closed. “I don’t have any answers why. Our people campaigned and talked to people.”

Keis offered a couple of reasons why Republicans did so well. “It was a combination of things. We had very good candidates. Also, the demeanor of the country. The economy is good and employment is high. I also think Gov. Andrew Cuomo helped us with all the stupid stuff that’s going on in Albany lately.”

Keis exclaimed, “I’m happy as hell. We had super candidates and they ran good races.”

County Legislature Minority Leader Susan Labuhn, D-Salamanca, said. “You can’t always win. I don’t feel bad. I had eight good years. The way it looks, Dave Koch will be the only Democrat on the County Legislature next year.”

Labuhn said there appeared to be a Republican sentiment in many of her visits with voters. “I attribute it to everything that’s going on in the country,” she said, adding many voters had expressed displeasure with Cuomo.

“My sister in Great Valley said someone sent out texts telling voters to vote Republican to get Cuomo out,” Labuhn said.

The unofficial results from the Cattaraugus County Board of Elections follows. Political parties are: D for Democrat, R for Republican, C for Conservative, I for Independence Party, WF for Working Families and L for Libertarian.

District 1 - Vote for two

Mary Jane Stuhr, D, WF, 378

Constance Johnson, D, 375

*Andrew Burr, R, C, I, 1,306

*Richard Klancer, R, C I, 1,298

District 2 - Vote for two

Edward Arnold, D, WF, 571

Mike Miles, D, WF, 515

*Joseph Boberg, R, C, I, 1,372

*Richard Helmich Jr., R, C, I, 1,243

District 3 - Vote for two

Sharon Mathe, D, WF, 713

Colette Schoening, D, WF, 660

Michael Brisky, R, C, I, 1,223

Ginger Schroder, R, C, I, 1,215

Chad Neal, L, 121

Abram Stanczykowski, L, 51

District 4 - Vote for two

John Hale, D, 620

Matthew Ring, D, 648

*Howard VanRensselaer, R, C, I, 1,178

*Norman Marsh, R, C, I, 972

District 5 - Vote for two

*Susan Labuhn, D, WF, 872

*David Koch, D, WF, 935

Laurie Hunt, R, C, I, 1,012

Jeremy Kasperek, L, 39

Damon Stokes, 165

District 6 - Vote for two

*Barbara J. Hastings, D, WF, 939

*Vergilio “Dick” Giardini, D, WF, 836

Robert Parker, R., C, I, 996

Donald Benson, R, C, I, 952

District 7 - Vote for two

*Joseph Snyder, R, 1,233

Kip Morrow, R, C, 1,352

Anthony Costa, L, 88

Eric Firkel, 346

District 8 - Vote for three

Adam Jester, D, WF, L, 1,145

John Crawford, D, WF, L, 1,139

Gerard LeFeber, D, WF, 870

*Frank Higgins, R, C, I, 1,396

Kelly Andreano, R, C, I, 1,504

Rick Smith, R, 1,164

Brian George, C, I, 272

Matt Peterson-Volz, L, 54