Peekskill Dems Lose In Appellate Court in Attempt to Disqualify Testa Petitions

Appellate Division Affirms Lower Court Decision Throwing Out Democrat Claim to Reject Testa Petitions

popup_appdivsecsealThe Appellate Division; Second Judicial Department of The Supreme Court of the State of New York unanimously upheld a lower court decision to throw out a claim brought by Peekskill Democrat Chairwoman, Marina Ciotti on behalf of County Legislator candidate Duane Jackson, against the Westchester County Board of Elections that looked to have the court reject the petitions legally obtained by County Legislator John Testa for the Republican and Independence Parties. The Independence Opportunity to Ballot petitions forced the September 10, 2013 Independence Party Primary Election where Legislator Testa waged a write-in campaign to obtain the Independence Party line in the November General Election. This will now clear the way for the Board of Elections (BOE) to finish the counting of all votes and certify the results of that primary.

When the lower court had dismissed the case brought against the BOE in August, Ms. Ciotti decided to appeal even though the court decision was clear cut and based on the claim being time-barred. In its “Decision and Order”, the Court wrote, “Since it is undisputed that this proceeding was not commenced within 14 days after the last day to file…as required by Election Law Section 16-102(2), the Supreme Court properly dismissed the proceeding as untimely.”

“The Peekskill Democratic Party and my opponent are determined to prevent a fair and open election process,” stated Legislator Testa. Their attempt to disenfranchise the voters of Cortlandt, Peekskill and Yorktown was resoundly rejected by the lower court. To continue their quest to eliminate the voters constitutional right of having the opportunity to vote for a candidate of their choice is unconscionable,” added Testa.

Peekskill Republican Party Chairman, Vincent C. Vesce, said, “The beat goes on and on with the local Democrat Party.  They seem intent on not allowing the election process to go forward unless they get their way. Even well after the time period elapsed for issuing simple challenges, they continued to waste the Court’s time and the taxpayer’s money on frivolous lawsuits such as this. To be honest, if the shoe was on the other foot and we had lost a claim in the lower court for similar reasons, I would have been embarrassed to bring such an appeal.”

About Legislator John G. Testa

John G. Testa, a life-long resident of Peekskill, began his first term on the Westchester County Legislature in January 2010. Prior to his successful run for the District 1 Legislative seat, he served 3 terms as Mayor of Peekskill from January 2002 until December 2007. Before becoming mayor he also served a four-year term as a Councilman. From his first days in office Testa worked tirelessly to set the City on the path of economic stability. Peekskill flourished under this plan, increasing the city fund balance to its highest in history. During John’s tenure in office, the NY State Comptroller’s Office named Peekskill one of the most fiscally sound municipalities in the State; independent auditors proclaimed Peekskill as being in its best fiscal condition in over 30 years; and Moody’s Investor Service agreed to upgrade its bond rating, resulting in further savings. The plan he put in place was so successful that it enabled the City of Peekskill to pass three budgets in a row with a 0% tax increase. These fiscal skills will prove valuable to Testa as he works to put the brakes on what has been wildly escalating county spending and unchecked government growth. He has pledged his efforts to work to consolidate services, eliminate wasteful spending and improve efficiency. In addition to the fiscal conservatism that served Peekskill so well, Testa worked to promote the city, attracting investment, jobs and an increased tax base. Over $100 million of private investment came to Peekskill in the forms of new residential construction, retail space, and the redevelopment of historic structures. As Mayor, Testa led a successful battle to stop the unfair and unsafe plan to send sewage to the Peekskill plant from outside the sewage/water district. John’s roots are deep within the soil of Northern Westchester. His father’s family has lived here for more than a century and his mother’s family is nearing that mark. He is proud that he was born in Peekskill and has lived and worked here all his life and, with his wife Nancy raised their two children here.
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2 Responses to Peekskill Dems Lose In Appellate Court in Attempt to Disqualify Testa Petitions

  1. Pingback: Westchester Law Enforcement Endorses Testa | SPSOA Local 809

  2. Pingback: Positively Cheaters | News from County Legislator John G. Testa

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