JAMESTOWN – As election officials in Chautauqua County work to certify this fall’s vote, the Republican majority in the Jamestown City Council is only becoming more apparent.
The Republicans swept the night winning seven seats on the lawmaking body, with several new faces joining the elected group.
The city’s GOP chairman and Ward I Councilman, Brent Sheldon, says he is going to be working with the newly elected lawmakers, Councilman At-Large Elect Randy Daversa and Ward VI Councilman Elect Anderew Faulkner, however it is still up in the air about who will replace Ward V Councilman Grant Olson.
“He was elected two years ago as a Republican, so we will be able to replace him with another Republican,” stated Sheldon. “We will start talking to some of the Ward V Republicans and see if we could find a good candidate.”
As for the process, once a candidate is selected by the Republican Party the person would need to be approved by the city’s Mayor. After that, they would need to officially campaign in fall 2022 and would then be up for re-election in fall 2023, according to Chautauqua County Board of Elections Commissioner Brian Abram.
“They would run back-to-back, sort of like (what happened with) the county executive where he fufflied a one year term and had to run again for his next four year term,” said Abram.
As for the search for the next councilperson, Sheldon is looking for someone who will put the best interest of Jamestown first.
“I’m looking for somebody who’s community minded, somebody who is maybe serving the community in another manner,” stated Sheldon.
The GOP holds a 7-2 majority on the lawmaking body, with Democrats Marie Carrubba and Regena Brackman maintaining their positions, however for Brackman only by a slim lead.
As Commissioner Abram explains, almost every year there is a race that comes down to the wire, like the race for Ward III.
“I’m sure both candidates, one saying ‘wow, I was just barely there,’ and the other saying, ‘if I could have got three more people to come out that day and support me,’” explained Abram.
Nevertheless, Brackman says she is humbled to continue to serve the people of Jamestown.
“My plans now are to continue to support the residents of Ward III in the city of Jamestown,” explained Brackman. “Hear their concerns and see what I can do to address them.”
Other races we are watching include County Legislative District 1 where projected winner Kevin Muldowney will likely win re-election leading with a difference of 54 votes, and the Highway Supervisor race in the Town of Carroll, where projected winner Michael Walker leads with an additional 27 votes from the absentee ballot count on Monday.