McDERMOTT WINS TRUSTEE ELECTION BY WIDE MARGIN AS TURNOUT TOPS 1,000; EPSTEIN KEEPS SEAT; LIEBERMAN ELECTED TO TWO YEAR TERM AS MAYOR
March 21, 2017 -- Deb McDermott won a seat on the Sea Cliff Village Board by a significant margin today as incumbent Trustee Dina Epstein garnered the second highest vote total to be re-elected to a second term. Incumbent Trustee Jeff Vitale, who had been appointed to his post this past December and who ran with Ms. Epstein on the Civic Progress Party line fell short by 44 votes in his bid to keep his seat. Mayor Ed Lieberman, also a Civic Progress nominee, was running unopposed, and won the office in his own right with 645 votes. In the contest for Trustee, Ms. McDermott received 725 votes; Ms. Epstein 466; and Mr. Vitale 422.
Turnout was heavy by Village standards with 1034 people casting votes in person and another 38 casting absentee ballots. At one point, the line, for those unfortunate enough to have a last name in the first half of the alphabet, stretched out of the Children’s Library vestibule and eastward along Sea Cliff Avenue.
For the last few years, fewer than 200 residents have turned out for uncontested “races”. The last competitive election, in 2012, attracted just over 700 voters.
Ms. McDermott, who touted her independence and ran on a platform promoting improved communication and transparency, was gracious in her victory and thankful for the turnout.
“I’m really happy with the engagement in this election,” she said. “I’m so grateful to our village that so many people came out to vote. Now I’m ready to get to work.”
Ms. Epstein, who was first elected in 2015, said that she was “looking forward to working with the board and with Deb.”
“I’m sure we’ll work together and do our best for Sea Cliff,” she said.
Mayor Lieberman, who had been appointed to his post this past November after his predecessor Bruce Kennedy stepped down and subsequently accepted an appointment to be Village Administrator, also expressed the desire to work together for the good of the Village.
“I congratulate Deb and Dina on their victory,” he said. “I look forward to working with Deb as a new Trustee and to continue having Dina as a dedicated member of the Board.”
The Mayor also had kind words for Mr. Vitale, whom he had tapped to complete his own term as trustee soon after he became Mayor late last year.
"I also congratulate Jeff Vitale on a gallant effort,” he said, “and know his talents will be available to the Village going forward.”
The two Trustees and Mayor will take the oath of office at the Annual Organization meeting on Monday, April 3.
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