| Times Herald-Record
MONTICELLO – The polls at the Ted Stroebele Community Center have been closed since 9 p.m. Tuesday.
But it will be Friday at the earliest before village residents know whether incumbent Mayor Gary Sommers or challenger George Nikolados, a village trustee, won the race for the top elected job in Monticello.
Or who the victors were in the three-way race for two trustee seats between incumbent Carmen Rue and challengers David G. Kamatz, a fellow Democrat, and Michael B. Banks Jr., a Republican.
The reason is that, in this year of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are hundreds of absentee ballots to be counted. That will happen on Friday, and if necessary will carry over into next week.
“We’re hoping for the best,” Sommers said Wednesday.
Sommers ran on the Republican, Conservative and Independence party lines, with Nikolados on the Democratic line.
While Sommers appointed Nikolados as deputy mayor shortly after being appointed to the mayor’s job in May 2018, the two have not always seen eye to eye.
A major point of contention between the two was that Sommers has continued to carry the additional title of village manager.
The mayor temporarily assumed that title as allowed under village code when David Sager resigned as manager in June 2018, citing a “dysfunctional, hostile and toxic’ work environment.
But Nikolados said the position should have been filled by now. Because Sommers, whose mayoral post is part-time, also works in New York City, Nikolados said the village is not getting full-time leadership,
Sommers has said he plans to fill the manager’s job if he is elected to a full, four-year term as mayor.
Rue, a trustee since 2008, had urged voters in campaign literature to also re-elect Sommers to continue progress toward their shared vision of a better village.