Returns Board wraps up election count
BY STACI WILSON
The Susquehanna County Returns Board convened Friday to begin wading through write-in votes from the Nov. 5 election and returned to the task on Tuesday.
Although overall voter turnout was a sparse 25.5 percent, some precincts posted a substantial number of write-ins on the ballot in borough council, mayoral and school director races.
Susquehanna County Director of Elections Laura Watts said the Returns Board came back with the unofficial count on Tuesday afternoon. Elections results become official after five days.
With no names appearing on the ballot, Hallstead Borough voters cast write-in votes for their elected leaders.
Unofficially, Steve Esposito garnered the most voted for mayor of Hallstead.
Terry Goff earned the most votes in the Hallstead Borough tax collector slot.
Top write-in vote-getters for Hallstead Borough Council were: Jim Canfield, Nicholas Burgess, David Calendar, and Theodore Loomis.
In the Blue Ridge School Director Region 3, Great Bend and Jackson townships, Frederick D. Lewis Jr. posted the most write-ins; and in the Region 3B, Great Bend Twp., Patrick MacConnell garnered the most votes.
In Friendsville Borough, Gary Hardy was written in as tax collector; and on borough council William Bostock, Teresa Savage and Cheryl Traver earned the most write-ins. The mayoral write-in vote went to Jim Savage.
Several races, however, were decided, on election night.
Choconut Twp. incumbent supervisor William Dovin retained his seat in a 128-51 victory over challenger Wayne Gittoes.
Dimock incumbent Charles Baker also retained his supervisor position in a 196-40 win over challenger Tom Charles.
Oakland Twp. incumbent supervisor Susan Rowe fended off a challenge by Richard Grausgruber, 72-43.
In Springville Twp., two sitting supervisors were running for the same six-year seat. Duane Wood received 134 votes to Charles Clark’s 34; but in a two-year supervisor seat that was blank on the ballot, there were 137 write-in votes cast.
Harford Twp. Supervisor Garry Foltz lost his reelection bid to Conrad Owens, 140-120.
New Milford Borough Mayor Joseph Taylor lost the race to former borough councilman Scott Smith, 105-45.
After earning both the Republican and Democratic nod in the May Primary in the Mountain View Region 1B, Clifford Twp., school director’s race, David Schulte Jr. lost the race to Independent Michael Barhite, who currently holds the seat.
In county-wide races, incumbent Sheriff Lance Benedict and incumbent Prothonotary/Clerk of Courts Susan Eddleston ran unopposed; and Magisterial District Judge incumbent Suzanne Brainard, Clifford District Court, also faced no challenger.
Benedict received 6,062 votes; Eddleston received 5,394; and Brainard netted 1,740 votes.