Election 2021: Republicans expected to regain majority in Rotterdam

Exterior photo of Rotterdam Town Hall on Sunrise Boulevard in Rotterdam. Inset: Town Supervisor-elect Mollie Collins. (Photo provided)

Exterior photo of Rotterdam Town Hall on Sunrise Boulevard in Rotterdam. Inset: Town Supervisor-elect Mollie Collins. (Photo provided)

ROTTERDAM — After Tuesday night’s election results and the idea that absentees tend to trend toward the dominant party, it’s likely that Republicans will regain the majority in Rotterdam.

The Republican party hasn’t held the majority since 2008, said John Mertz the town Republican chairman Wednesday. 

Currently Republican supervisor candidate Mollie Collins leads Democrat Joe Guidarelli by 281 votes. There were 513 absentee ballots issued in town with 335 returned. 

“Usually absentees break the same way the election night does,” Mertz said. “In Rotterdam we believe that we’ve swept the town board races. At the end of the day our candidates worked extremely hard to earn the trust of the voters.”

Collins said Guidarelli called and congratulated her on the victory. Guidarelli said Wednesday that knowing the trend he’s not sure he’d garner enough absentee votes to beat her. 

“It just wasn’t enough,” he said. 

Guidarelli, who is currently a board member, has been on the board for four years and also served one year in 2006. 

He said he called Collins and offered to help her and the other newcomers transition smoothly. 

“I said I’m here for them whatever they need,” he said. 

As for the future, Guidarelli said he’s not sure whether he’ll run for office again or even attend future board meetings. 

“Your frame of mind changes day to day,” he said. 

He wants the next board to continue focusing on getting the town into shape operationally, he said. 

Operations is what new board member Joe Mastroianni wants to get to work on, he said Wednesday. Mastroianni secured a board seat Wednesday night with 3,312 votes. 

“I’m very fortunate to step into running for office, something that I never intended or inspired or wanted to do,” Mastroianni said. 

However, he said the Republicans ran a good campaign. But the race wasn’t without its controversy. The Conservative Party came out against Mastroianni, who they didn’t endorse, but who had won the party line during the primaries. The Conservative Party urged people not to vote for Mastroianni due to Facebook posts he made sharing misinformation on the September 11 terror attacks. Mastroianni said the posts were meant to spark debate among people.

“I don’t want to change who I am to get elected,” Mastroianni said about the issue. “I put myself out there and tried to present the issues, present myself and to give the electorate an opportunity to choose for themselves.”

His focus is now turning to bettering the town and working collaboratively with the board, he said. 

He said he wants to focus on getting town finances and operations in to order after the town presented a budget that would raise taxes next year, including a 25% tax increase on businesses. 

Democrat incumbent Stephen Signore posted on Facebook congratulating his opponents. Charles “Jack” Dodson leads Signore by 190 votes. Signore has been on the board for four years. He said he’s unsure if he’ll run again in the future. 

“If the galaxy needs me, I may be convinced,” he said. 

He wants the next board to focus on issues surrounding the courts, judges’ salaries and the caseload going through the court. He also wants to see the board work on the town’s infrastructure, including its roads and sewer lines and try to sit down with local developers to see why they aren’t interested in building single-family homes in Rotterdam. 

Collins said she’s ready to get to work with all of the town board members to address the town’s issues. 

“We all live in Rotterdam and we want Rotterdam to be a great place,” Collins said. “We have to work together as a team to move the town forward.”

Supervisor’s race

Mollie Collins (R)- 3,480

Joe Guidarelli (D)- 3,219


Two board seats

Joe Mastroianni (R)- 3,312

Charles “Jack” Dodson (R)- 3,167

Stephen Signore (D)- 2,977

Jesse McGuire (D)- 2,498

Categories: News, Schenectady County


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