Robert Cree (R) was the big winner in Lansing elections Tuesday -- by one vote. Cree won his second term on the Lansing Town Board with 1,218 votes (26.11% of the votes), followed by Doug Dake (R), who won a first term on the board with 1,217 votes (26.09%). Mike Sigler (R) won a second term on the Tompkins County Legislature with 961 votes (51.28). That meant Republicans swept all the Lansing positions in this year's election.
4,664 voters weighed in on who should fill the two available Lansing Town Board positions. Cree and Dake got the top votes, followed by incumbent Katrina Binkewicz (D) and challenger Gay Nicholson (D). Binkewicz received 1,141 votes (24.46%) and Nicholson followed with 1,086 (23.28%).
Four years ago Pat Pryor (D) edged Sigler out of his Legislature seat with only seven votes. This year Sigler came back with an aggressive campaign to take back the seat 961 (51.28%) to 913 (48.72%), a 48 vote spread. Of the 1,955 ballots cast there were 76 undervotes, 5 overvotes and 8 double votes.
In the Town Board election 2,415 ballots were cast, with 158 undervotes, 8 overvotes and 31 double votes. There were two write-in votes. Tuesday's vote swings the majority on the five-member Town Board from three Democrats (Supervisor Kathy Miller, Ruth Hopkins and Binkewicz) to three Republicans (Cree, Dake and Ed LaVigne).
Election night counts are considered 'unofficial' results because even though all eight Lansing districts reported to the Board of Elections, write-in votes are counted later in a grueling process during which candidates and their attorneys may challenge the legitimacy of each write-in vote. However, the margins in this year's election are high enough to insure that Cree, Dake and Sigler will be seated in January.
In other elections, Judith F. O'Shea (R) won the top number of votes (7,507, or 51.18%) for State Supreme Court Justice in the 6th Judicial District. Eugene D. Faughnan (R) won the second seat with 6,924 (47.21%). Joseph Cassidy (D) received 10,672 votes (78.02%) to defeat Kelly A. Damm (IND) (2,961 21.65%) for County Court Judge.
Gwen Wilkinson (D) won a second term as District Attorney with 11,314 votes (99.42%). While she ran an uncontested campaign there were 66 write-in votes. In a closely watched Dryden contest Tompkins County Legislature Chair Martha Robertson won a new term with 1,068 (69.26%) votes, defeating challenger Amy L. Scott-Foster (R) (472 30.61%). Robertson was subjected to an unusual volume of attack adds and scrutiny in this election most likely because she is running for U.S. Congress in next year's election.
In state-wide proposals Tompkins County voters opposed casino gambling 9435 (opposed) to 6824. However 57.1% of voters across New York State said yes.
Tompkins County was more in line with state-wide voters on granting Additional Civil Service Credit for Veterans with Disabilities Certified Post-Appointment with 13,179 (84.62%) yes votes. State-wide 83.7% of voters said yes. 62.2% of New Yorkers voted yes on Proposal 3, to exclude indebtedness contracted for sewage facilities. 65.82% of Tompkins County voters agreed.
75.23% of County voters said yes to proposal 4 (Settling Disputed Title in the Forest Preserve), matching the state-wide vote of 72.6% in favor. On Proposal 5 (In Relation to a Land Exchange in the State Forest Preserve with NYCO Minerals, Inc.) 53% of state-wide voters said yes, while 57.39 of Tompkins County voters were opposed. Proposal 6 (Increasing Age until which Certain State Judges Can Serve) got 56.94% no votes in Tompkins County, in line with the 60.4% of New Yorkers who said no.
There are 11,016,685 registered voters in New York. About 2.5 million of them voted on casino gambling with far fewer voting on the other proposals. State-wide election night results are also considered 'unofficial'.