Village to settle mayoral tie
A small village in Otsego County is dealing with a unique problem after their village elections this year. They had a record number of voters, but as our Andrew Sorensen tells us, they still can't decide on just one mayor.
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GILBERTSVILLE, N.Y. -- Gilbertsville is small.
“It's just slightly this much smaller than a square mile,” said Leigh Eckmayir, Gilbertsville historian.
So small, you can consider them a no stoplight town.
“There was a stop light, right up here at the corner,” said Eckmayir.
Village Historian Leigh Eckmayir wanted fill us in on a night for the history books at the Value Way Country Store because it's bigger than the village offices.
“Amazing! Absolutely amazing. As far as I can tell, we've never had a tied election in the Village of Gilbertsville,” Eckmayir explained.
Wednesday's village mayoral election was a tie. 61 votes for incumbent Diane Gallo, and 61 votes for Kenneth Nolan.
“I am delighted that, number one people were engaged and involved, number two, that nobody lost,” said Diane Gallo, Gilbertsville mayor.
But what do they do now? They both really want the job.
“I've lived here all my life, I know all the problems, and hopefully all of the solutions to the problems,” said Kenneth Nolan, Gilbertsville mayoral candidate.
“We are a fragile little bubble, and that truly could be destroyed by being handled wrong,” said Mayor Gallo.
So some of the villagers have come up with an unusual solution: Two mayors.
“My wish was that we might form a coalition. Because I really am concerned that there not be a sense of 'them and us,'” said Mayor Gallo.
“I’m a married man, I've been married all my life, and somebody has to make the decisions. Usually it's my wife, but you can't have two people making decisions,” said Nolan.
So Nolan won't go for that. The state says it's illegal anyway...so what's next?
“There's two options. One, which is almost ludicrous, is they put our names in a hat, and then the Supreme Court judge pulls a name out,” said Nolan.
Nobody seems to want to leave it to chance, so the only option left is a runoff election. The state says that will have to be held April 2nd.