MALTA: Klotz, Thomas win GOP primary

From a field of three candidates, two newcomers to the Malta town board were voted in as Republican candidates on primary day, Sept. 18.

The Rev. Peter Klotz, the town's planning board chairman, earned the lion's share of the votes with 665 in total. Tara Thomas garnered 569 votes, and Donna Gizzi, town board member since 2006, received 515 votes.

I appreciate the tremendous vote of confidence from the Republican voters, said Klotz, who is pastor of St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Malta. "I'm disappointed Donna wasn't also successful, but we'll see what's ahead."

Tara Thomas, who was out picking up her campaign signs on the roadsides early Wednesday, Sept. 19, said she was elated by the outcome of the primaries.

"It was a great campaign; I'm proud to have run an upbeat, positive, energetic campaign," said Thomas. "I'm absolutely thrilled with the vote. I'm looking forward to running on the ticket with the Republican incumbents, and I hope Donna Gizzi, as a member of the Republican Party, will get behind us and help lead us to victory in November."

Gizzi could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

In an election twist, senior town board members Cliff Lange, Gerald Winters and Sue Daley-Nolen gave their endorsements of Klotz and Gizzi last week, a week after town Supervisor Paul Sausville announced his support for Thomas.

Wednesday morning, Sausville said he looks forward to working with Klotz and Thomas on future town business.

"The campaign slogan on Klotz's signs, 'bringing people together' resonated with many people, including myself," said Sausville. "We need to begin to work as a team. The voters have spoken, and now it's up to us to move ahead. Change is forever with us, and this is a chance for new ideas and new perspectives. It's a positive thing for the town.""

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