FALLSBURG—Before the Sullivan County Board of Elections began to count the 990 absentee ballots for the 2021 election, both Fallsburg candidates for the supervisor race have filed lawsuits over …
FALLSBURG—Before the Sullivan County Board of Elections began to count the 990 absentee ballots for the 2021 election, both Fallsburg candidates for the supervisor race have filed lawsuits over the ballots.
Steve Vegliante, the Democratic incumbent, filed his lawsuit on November 14 with the Supreme Court of the State of New York County of Sullivan. Vegliante’s challenger for the supervisor seat, Kathy Rappaport, who is running under the Preserve Sullivan Party, filed her lawsuit two days before on November 12.
Rappaport told the Democrat, “It is so important to the health of our democracy that every legal vote is counted. I expect that process to be orderly, and I thank the Sullivan County Board of Elections for their diligence. I am proud of the broad and diverse coalition we built, and I hope to have the opportunity to serve my community.”
Currently, Vegliante holds a 406-vote lead in the supervisor’s race for Fallsburg, 1,102 votes to 696, according to the unofficial election results from the Sullivan County Board of Elections. This tally includes all early voting as well as Election Day voting.
According to Dan Hust, Director of Communications for Sullivan County, 990 absentee ballots were received before the deadline.
Rappaport’s lawsuit is against the Sullivan County Board of Elections, and its commissioners, Cora Edwards and Lori Benjamin, and Fallsburg Supervisor Steven Vegliante.
The Democrat reached out to the county for a comment, but Hust stated that they do not comment on pending litigation.
Rappaport is asking to verify the ballots cast on election night and the “validity” of all affidavits, emergency, absentee, military, special ballots, and any other ballots that were cast for the Fallsburg's supervisor’s race.
Vegliante claims in his lawsuit that 62 residents did not request a ballot in a timely manner yet still submitted a ballot for the election.
Furthermore, the Vegliante suit asks to canvass the polling machines, affidavits, emergency, absentee, military, and special ballots and request to have counsel present during the recount.
Vegliante filed the lawsuit along with Councilperson Nathan Steingart, who is seeking reelection, and Councilperson candidate Michael Bensimon.
Their lawsuit also asks for “ ... the preservation, testing, and Court inspection of voting machines which appear to have malfunctioned or been tampered with.”
Vegliante, Steingart and Bensimon’s lawsuit is against Sullivan County Board of Elections, and its commissioners, Cora Edwards and Lori Benjamin, and Kathy Rappaport along with the candidates for Fallsburg Councilperson, Sean Wall-Carty, and Miranda Behan.
The Democrat reached out to Vegliante for comment on the lawsuit but did not hear back by press time.
Hust said there is no set time when the counting of absentee ballots will officially be done.
However, it was expected that counting of Fallsburg’s absentees ballots would begin yesterday.
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