Mahan-Sheehan town supervisor race very tight

The race for Colonie town supervisor was too close to call Tuesday night, with incumbent Democrat Pa

The race for Colonie town supervisor was too close to call Tuesday night, with incumbent Democrat Paula Mahan holding a 296-vote lead but 1,000 absentee ballots yet to be counted.

Mahan, 60, who was seeking a third two-year term, faced Republican challenger Denise Sheehan, 47. Unofficial results gave Mahan 10,966 votes and Sheehan 10,670 votes. The position’s salary is $118,229.

Michael Frasier, Sheehan’s director of communications, said the campaign expected a tight race. “We knew we faced an uphill campaign here. We were facing an incumbent and all indications were it would be tight and it is,” he said.

Absentee ballots will likely be opened next week, Frasier said.

Mahan came to office in 2007 on a platform of budgetary accountability, defeating six-term Republican Town Supervisor Mary Brizzell by less than 1,000 votes. Republicans, who long controlled town politics, found themselves on the defensive after Moody’s Investor Services issued a critical report on the town in the summer of 2007 that said it had more than five years of operating deficits that had reached $10 million in the general fund. Later audits put the deficit at nearly $20 million.

Since then, Mahan said she has eliminated the deficit and helped lower taxes. One method was to lease the town’s Rapp Road landfi ll to a private landfill operator for 25 years. Under the deal, approved in July, California-based Waste Connections will give the town $23 million immediately, $2.3 million a year for the fi rst five years, then $1.1 million a year for the next 20.

Sheehan, a former state Department of Environmental Conservation commissioner and town planning director, has accused the Democrat-controlled Town Board of crafting the deal without public input. She also said the town has undervalued the landfi ll’s income potential.

Democrats appeared to have retained control of the six-member Town Board, capturing all three contested seats. Unoffi cial results are:

Incumbent Democrat William Carl: 10,266, or 18 percent. Incumbent Democrat Nancy Hernandez, who is deputy supervisor: 10,041, or 18 percent of the total. Democrat Paul Rosano: 10,125, or 18 percent of the vote. Meanwhile, in the contested Guilderland Town Board race, Democrats captured the two open seats once held by Republicans, giving them full control of the fi vemember board. Unofficial results are: Democrat Brian K. Forte: 4,365, or 32 percent of the total. Democrat Allen F. Maikels: 3,522, or 26 percent.

Categories: Schenectady County

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