Ancram Dems choose Bassin for supervisor

ANCRAM—Town Democrats decisively backed Art Bassin as their candidate for town supervisor in the November election.
   At the Democrats’ August 8 caucus, Mr. Bassin, the chairman of the town’s Comprehensive Plan Committee, beat back a challenge from Rick DuBray by a vote of 74 to 25, with 3 Democrats voting No, meaning they did not support either candidate. Mr. Bassin narrowly lost his bid for a seat on the Town Board in 2007.
   According to Town Democratic Committee Co-chair Madeleine Israel, more than 100 Democrats, that’s one-third of all the registered Democrats in town, attended the caucus at Town Hall from 5 to 7 p.m.
   Ms. Israel faced off against Councilwoman Donna Hoyt for one of the two four-year terms on the Town Board up for grabs. Ms. Israel won the nomination by a vote of 65 to 35.
   Unchallenged for the nomination to the other available four-year town board seat, Councilman Robert Mayhew was chosen to run with 64 votes. Thirty-three Democrats voted No.
   Both Ms. Hoyt and Mr. Mayhew won election to one-year terms on the town board last November. Those one-year terms were what remained in the terms of former councilmen Robert Podris and Gerald Roberts who, along with former councilman James Bryant, all resigned in August 2008. The mass exodus left town government without a quorum and unable to act on any measure until Governor David Paterson appointed Jack Lindsey to the board last September.
   Mr. Bryant had three-years remaining in his term at the time of his resignation. His term was filled by the election of James Miller, a Republican, who won the seat over Ms. Israel last November.
   Democrats chose Robert Roche as their candidate for highway superintendent with 84 votes. Nine No votes were cast. Mr. Roche faced no challengers.
   Democrats fielded no candidate for the position of town clerk/tax collector.
   David Boice was the caucus chairman and Mary Shimkin was secretary.
   Town Republicans have set a second caucus date of August 18, 7 p.m. at Town Hall. The town GOP’s first attempt at candidate selection July 14 ran into some procedural snags that caused Republican Committeeman Ronald Brant, who chaired the caucus, to call for a do-over.
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