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BALLSTON: Party challenges petition

Another issue has been introduced in the already complex and competitive bid for town of Ballston supervisor.

At issue are the signatures compiled by J.D. Wood, a Republican candidate who threw his hat into the ring three weeks ago in a bid to run against fellow Republican Harold Townley, a longtime member of the town board.

Wood's petition required the signatures of a certain percentage of registered Republicans in town, equaling a minimum of 148 names. Wood said his petition was signed by 184 party-registered residents.

Now, the town Republican committee, chaired by Alan Colyer, has turned in an objection to the Saratoga County Board of Elections regarding Wood's petition.

This is another example of the good old boys network, and I'm upsetting the apple cart, said Wood. "But in a way, I'm flattered they're going through all this trouble to discredit me. That must mean I'm a strong opponent."

Diane Wade, the board of elections Republican Party commissioner, downplayed the significance of the objection to Wood's petition.

"This isn't the only petition with an objection filed," said Wade. "There are many out there. You always find them in local elections."

Wade said over the course of the next several days, Wood's petition will be reviewed line by line.

"We received the specs, and we'll go over them to determine whether the signatures are valid or invalid," said Wade.

Signatures can be deemed invalid if they are people no longer residing at the address, or are contained on more than one candidate's petition. In that case, whichever signature was received on the earliest date takes precedence; any signature on another petition will be tossed out.

"Do they think I would stoop to using false names, or going to a graveyard for names?" said Wood. "I got the vast majority of those signatures in person, and anyone else getting them for me signed an affidavit on the bottom of each page that the signatures are valid. There's no question in my mind the petition has been done properly."

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