Garden City picks village election candidates

Retail, commercial, industrial and manufacturing establishments cannot be Retail, commercial, industrial and manufacturing establishments cannot be open for business from midnight to 6 a.m. under a law passed, 8-0, at a June 6, 2013, Garden City board meeting. (Aug. 9, 2011) Photo Credit: T.C. McCarthy

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Three Garden City Village trustees won runoff elections on Tuesday -- surviving challenges mounted after they had been selected by their respective property owners association nominating committee.

The village has an unusual method of choosing its officials: The four associations choose nominees, who usually are unopposed. Each association has two representatives on the eight-member board. The mayor is one of those representatives and rotates by agreement among the associations.

The names of Tuesday's runoff winners will appear on the official village ballot on March 19.

In the mayoral contest, the Western Property Owners' Association pick, Trustee John J. Watras, beat fellow Trustee Laurence J. Quinn, 206-103. Watras resigned from his position as trustee to be considered for mayor. Robert Bolebruch will serve out the remaining one year on Watras' term.

The Garden City Estates Property Owners' Association nominee, John A. DeMaro, also a current trustee, defeated resident Gregory R. Blair, 335-208. The Eastern Property Owners' Association choice, Trustee Dennis C. Donnelly, beat out resident Francine Ryan, 441-226.

Watras, 58, a 19-year village resident and 10-year trustee, has said he plans to find ways to streamline village finances, add revenue and improve services.

DeMaro, 45, a seven-year resident finishing his first term as trustee, has said he wants to cut village costs while improving quality of life and maintaining amenities and infrastructure.

Donnelly, 66, a 45-year resident and three-term trustee, has said he will continue to maintain village services while keeping taxes low.

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