LITTLE VALLEY — Will Republicans, who now control 12 of the 17 Cattaraugus County Legislature seats, maintain a majority after Tuesday’s elections?
All 17 of the seats are up for election, with nine Republican incumbents and four Democratic incumbents are seeking re-election to four-year terms.
Democrats have controlled county government only once in more than 100 years, for two years in the early 1990s.
Two Republicans, Chairman James J. Snyder of Olean and Majority Leader Donna Vickman of Farmersville; and John Padlo, D-Olean, are term-limited and could not seek re-election. Franklinville Republican Robert Breton declined nomination.
Olean Democrat John Padlo was also prohibited by law from running again after having served three four-year terms.
Cattaraugus County Republican Party Chairman Robert Keis Sr., predicts Republicans “will hold on to our supermajority.”
“I’m pretty optimistic about our candidates across the board — we may even pick up a seat or two,” he said. “It will be a great Election Day for Republicans.”
His Democratic counterpart, County Democratic Party Chairman Frank Puglisi said, “Throughout the county, our Democratic candidates are knocking on doors and talking to voters. They’ve gotten some great responses. A lot of people are thinking it’s time for a change and some new faces. We have individuals with diverse backgrounds who will bring fresh ideas to the table.”
Republicans have 16 candidates. They only fielded one candidate in District 5, which has two legislators. Nine of the 12 incumbent Republicans are seeking re-election.
On the Democratic side of the political aisle, they have 15 candidates. There are no Democratic candidates in District 7, which has two legislators. Four incumbent Democrats are seeking re-election. Six Libertarian candidates are also running, and two others were cross-endorsed.
There are 17,878 active registered Republicans in Cattaraugus County, compared to 13,748 Democrats as of Friday, according to the state Board of Elections. There were also 9,305 with no party, 2,311 Independence Party members, 1,099 Conservatives, 239 from the Working Families Party, 135 Green Party members, 86 Libertarians and 36 from other parties.
The candidates are:
Mary Jane Stuhr, D, WF-Perrysburg.
Constance Johnson, D-Perrysburg.
*Andrew Burr, R, C, I-Gowanda.
*Richard Klancer, R, C I-Gowanda.
Edward Arnold, D, WF-Freedom.
Mike Miles, D, WF-Freedom.
*Joseph Boberg, R, C, I-Delevan
*Richard Helmich Jr., R, C,I-Delevan
Sharon Mathe, D, WF-Ellicottville.
Colette Schoening, D, WF-Lyndon.
Michael Brisky, R, C, I-Franklinville.
Ginger Schroder, R, C, I-Farmersville.
Chad Neal, L-Ellicottville.
Abram Stanczykowski, L-Franklinville.
John Hale, D-Randolph.
Matthew Ring, D-Randolph.
*Howard VanRensselaer, R, C, I-Randolph.
*Norman Marsh, R, C, I-Little Valley.
*Susan Labuhn, D, WF-Salamanca.
*David Koch, D, WF-Salamanca.
Laurie Hunt, R, C, I-Salamanca.
Jeremy Kasperek, L-Salamanca.
*Barbara J. Hastings, D, WF-Allegany.
*Vergilio “Dick” Giardini, D, WF-Allegany.
Robert Parker, R., C, I-Allegany.
Donald Benson, R, C, I-Allegany.
*Joseph Snyder, R-Ischua.
Kip Morrow, R, C-Portville.
Anthony Costa, L-Westons Mills.
Adam Jester, D,WF,L-Olean.
John Crawford, D, WF,L-Olean.
Gerard LeFeber, D, WF-Olean.
*Frank Higgins, R, C, I-Olean.
Kelly Andreano, R, C, I-Olean.
Rick Smith, R, independent-Olean.
Brian George, C, I-Olean.
Matt Peterson-Volz, L-OLean.
(Contact reporter Rick Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter, @RMillerOTH)