On Primary Day, Knox Dems should vote for the GOP slate

To the Editor:

When one opens our local paper and begins to read the articles in it, we are led to believe the printed words hold truth, facts, and information we can rely on.

Throwing blame and calling out “miss truths” really isn’t any way to go about correcting what was written. Instead my path will be to tell the other side and to give my version of a few decisions made by a small group of fellow residents in my hometown of Knox.

The Democratic committee consists of seven people. The committee members are tasked with finding  people they feel should run for various positions in our next general election on the Democratic line. The committee of seven then calls a caucus for all registered Democrats in the town of Knox.

At this caucus, the committee nominates the candidates it desires and anyone interested in serving the community and running for office may be openly nominated as well. It’s important to note that the caucus must be openly and publicly advertised at least 10 days prior giving all the Democrats in the town of Knox a chance to have their say.

The candidate who garners the majority vote at the caucus secures the Democratic line in the November general election.

Best I can tell this has been the process in Knox forever — until now!

The trusted committee of seven made a decision and changed this process without any public notice earlier this year. All done backdoor, yet legal. They chose their friends and immediate family members to run on the D line.

Remarkably, one committee member Mrs. Amy Pokorny, wrote a letter to the Enterprise editor on April 11, inviting the Democrats to participate. What she failed to tell you is that the decision to do away with the caucus process was made on Jan. 30, 2019.

She along with Dolores Woessner executed a Certificate of Rule Adoption on Feb. 4, 2019 and filed the same with the Albany County Board of Elections on Feb. 7, 2019. Yet she chose to make the decision public on April 11, 2019.

She had two-and-a-half months to notify the Knox Democrats of the change but instead nominated her husband to run for supervisor, garnered signatures from friends and family, and waited until April 11, 2019 to notify Democrats.

The change from a caucus to a petition-nominating process was done in a vacuum. And coincidentally, the very last day candidates interested in running for office were able to file a petition was April 11, 2019,  the very same day her letter was sent to The Altamont Enterprise.

How stupid does the committee think the Democrats in Knox are and how insulting can Mrs. Pokorny be? She had months to openly and honestly involve the Knox Democrats in the process and chose the very last day to send notice. Shame on the committee and her for alienating over 600 Democrats in Knox.  They owe us all an apology.

Had I and any other Democrat been properly made aware of the change in the nomination process, we would have had the opportunity have our voices heard, circulate petitions, and participate as candidates in the upcoming primary, allowing all of the Democrats an opportunity to choose their candidate for November.

Stating that last year’s caucus was reason to end a long-time practice is completely insulting. When many people come together, there is bound to be a back-and-forth discussion. It’s a healthy process. What I got out of last year’s caucus was that the majority vote elected their candidates and we all went home.

The Democratic primary will be June 25. Please come out and vote.

As a long-time member of this community, I was honored to be asked, voted on, and accepted to run on the Republican, Independence, and Conservative party lines for town council member in the upcoming general election in November.

I accept these nominations with respect of the faith put in me to serve our community. Given the opportunity, I will serve with honesty, integrity, and my understanding of a simple belief in serving the needs of those who elected me.

This is not my first letter to the editor. Recently, I wrote concerning the disrespect shown toward our current town board and our supervisor, Vas Lefkaditis, at town meetings. Taking the time to pay attention to what’s been going on has given me the motivation to step up and run for town council.

Positive things are happening here in our town in so many different ways. There are residents working to improve and to support these positive changes. Nothing happens overnight and I hope to be a part of our continued town-wide improvements and growth.

While interviewing with the Independence Party Committee, a committee member pointed out one of the comments that has stuck with me is, “This slate of people you have brought here represents all parties.”  The statement made an impression on me and stayed with me.

It sums up how true representation of a community should be — diverse. This is something I am excited to be a part of. We will never all agree on every issue but we must respect the majority vote, stand behind it, and make it work in the best interest of Knox’s residents.

The Republican, Independence, and Conservative parties, for the town of Knox, have put forward their candidates. Each of my fellow running mates are community members that, given the chance, I will be honored to serve with:

— Vas Lefkaditis, Town Supervisor (D);

— Gary Salisbury, Highway Superintendent (R);

— June Springer, Town Councilman (D);

— Dennis Cyr, Town Councilman (R);

— Traci Schanz, Town Clerk (I);

— Betty Walk, Tax Collector (D);

— Bonnie Donati, Town Justice (R).

June Springer


Editor’s note: See related story.

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