Dems keep seats in Berne

Dawn Jordan

Karen Schimmer

BERNE — The town’s two incumbent councilwomen were voted back to their seats despite clamoring by opponents for more public input after a large piece of recreational property was purchased with town money this year.

According to unofficial results, Dawn Jordan, who was appointed to the town board two years ago, won her first full term with 460 votes, and Karen Schimmer won a second term, with 470 votes, maintaining the all­-Democrat board of five. Sean Lyons got 340 votes, with Rick Otto having the least, at 333.

Otto and Lyons ran on Republican, Conservative, and Reform Party lines, calling for a harsher condemnation by the town on the state’s gun­-control law, less stringent zoning requirements, and public referendums on all major purchases by the town board.
A swath of hilltop land on Game Farm Road facing the Catskills and was purchased for recreation and to help the local economy.

Some residents, as well as the two Republican candidates, considered it and other town properties a drain on municipal funds.

Otto and Lyons did not consider a natural gas pipeline extension running through the county as unwelcome, while Schimmer and Jordan spoke about how deeply concerned residents were and the danger it posed.

The two councilwomen also campaigned on lowered tax rates in recent budgets.

The assesor’s race in Berne was unopposed. Incumbent Democrats Brian Crawford and Christine Valachovic were given new terms.


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