This is a letter to the editor submitted by Danby Democratic Committee Chair Ted Crane. To submit letters, email Managing Editor Kelsey O’Connor at koconnor@ithacavoice.com.

Democrats in the Town of Danby will be able to select candidates for Town offices as part of the New York State primary election!

During its meeting on Tuesday, February 5, 2019, the Danby Democratic Committee voted to change the way candidates for Town offices are chosen, moving from a political caucus to a public primary.

This change empowers voters in Danby by allowing them to choose when to vote and by permitting an unhurried, private ballot. More Democrats are expected to participate in a primary than a caucus. Voters who are unable to visit a polling place can take part using an absentee ballot.
The Committee hopes that the change will lead to the selection of Democratic candidates who reflect the interests of a larger cross-section of Danby voters.

Polling places for the primary, staffed by the Tompkins County Board of Elections, will be open from noon to 9 p.m. on June 25. This 9-hour window, by itself, is far more convenient for voters than attending a 1- or 2-hour long caucus.

The Committee expects that there will be one or more “Meet The Candidates” forums prior to the actual primary voting.

The Committee wants to signal a change in participation in the Danby Democratic Committee itself. During the meeting, five new members were added to the committee and the committee is looking for members who are interested in identifying, developing, and promoting candidates who will provide the best possible government for the Town of Danby. Members and volunteers work to cement the vital role of the Committee within Danby’s community thru activities that can include social events, voter registration drives, and gathering petition signatures. They can also be involved in campaigns at the County, State, and National level.

The Committee is also looking for candidates for Town offices. Potential candidates are also affected by the change from a caucus to a primary and changes in the New York State Election Law. Candidates must now begin their campaign efforts in late February by collecting signatures on ballot petitions. The Committee will offer two campaign “how to” workshops for candidates, at 7 p.m. February 19 and 20 in the Danby Fire Station meeting room.

The following Town of Danby offices will be on the ballot this year:

  • Supervisor – 2-year term
  • Clerk – 2-year term
  • Highway Superintendent – 2-year term
  • Councilpersons (2) – 4-year term
  • Justices (2) – 4-year term

For more information about the change, about membership in the Danby Committee, or about running for office, contact the Committee chair, Ted Crane, at ted@danby.democrat or 607.269.5278.