Incumbent Supervisor Jack Cunningham has conceded to challenger Sam Messina in the Town of Bethlehem after absentee ballots were opened this morning at the county Board of Elections offices.
Election workers counted ballots from 12 out of 30 districts before Messina's lead became insurmountable. Going into Thursday's counting, Messina was leading Cunningham by 115 votes.
I have to admit that I'm very disappointed, because I truly loved doing this job, said Cunningham. "The voters are the ones that make this decision, the voters have made a decision, and I'll abide by that."
"I'm glad the entire process is over," said Messina. "I look forward to functioning as the supervisor."
Messina, who sits on the Town Board, said that he would be looking towards transitioning into the office of supervisor in the coming days and weeks. The Independence Party member emphasized his desire to reach across party lines and keep an open dialogue going in Town Hall.
Cunningham said he has already asked department heads to prepare briefs on their ongoing operations, projects and challenges for the incoming supervisor.
"This was my livelihood, so next I'll be looking for something in order to pay the bills," said Cunningham. He previously worked in banking, but said he would also like to continue work along the lines of what he did as supervisor.
"One of the thing I enjoyed so much as town supervisor was working on policyand doing something for the community," he said.
The Board of Elections will continue to tally the rest of the votes. Check back to www.spotlightnews.com for a fully tally once it becomes available, or read the Nov. 18 edition of The Spotlight.