After tie, Thurman board will fill seat
That means it will be up to the Town Board to appoint someone to fill the seat after the oaths of office in January.
Two of the four Town Board seats were up for a vote. Incumbent Gail Seaman and Joan Harris were tied with 241 votes after absentee ballots were counted Tuesday.
The Town Board can choose to appoint one of those candidates or someone else to serve in the position in 2016.
Retired Psychologist John Youngblood won a seat. The other candidate, Debra Runyon, finished out of the running.
Initially, Warren County Board of Elections thought the candidates would be headed to a state Supreme Court judge to determine a fair way to break the tie.
When election officials heard back from the state, they learned that a tie in a village goes to a judge but not in a tie in a town election.
“The only time it goes to a state Supreme Court justice is if it’s in a village,” said Warren County Board of Elections Republican Commissioner Mary Beth Casey.
“With a tie, no one can take the oath of office, so come Jan. 1, there will be a vacancy. The town will appoint someone to fill that term until Dec. 31, 2016,” Casey said.
Voters will determine in November 2016 who will fill the remainder of that term.
Casey said the legal term for what happened was a “failure to elect,” which means the town has an open vacancy and the board can appoint whomever it chooses.
“I’ve never had this happen before, so this was a wonderful learning experience for me,” Casey said. “No two election years are ever the same.”