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Nassau judge says trustee race in Old Westbury is a tie

The results of a disputed village race in Old Westbury indicate a tie, according to a judge's ruling issued Thursday.

Two challengers, running as write-ins, unseated trustees in the June 16 election. A third race originally had incumbent Andrew Weinberg leading write-in challenger Leslie Fastenberg by three votes, 177-174, village officials reported last month.

Justice Arthur M. Diamond of Nassau State Supreme Court wrote in his decision, released Thursday, "the parties stipulated that the final tally of votes is" 178 apiece for Fastenberg and Weinberg. Diamond directed the Board of Elections "to complete their recanvass and tabulate the results of the election, and certify the results."

In the June election, write-in candidates Marina Chimerine and Cory Baker unseated incumbent trustees Harvey Simpson and Christopher Sauvigne. Baker, Chimerine, and Fastenberg had formed the New Voice of Old Westbury Party, opposing the incumbents.

Village attorney Michael Sahn said 391 people showed up to vote and the village received approximately 13 absentee ballots.

Fastenberg called the decision "thrilling" in an interview Thursday. "Justice is having its day," she said. "All we ever wanted was our fair day for the voters to be heard."

Weinberg said "we're just going to see the process through" and declined to comment. His attorney, Steven Schlesinger, of the Garden City firm Jaspan Schlesinger LLP, said he is planning to file an appeal to Diamond's decision.

"We disagree with some of" the ruling, Schlesinger said by email.

For his part, Sahn said "the election results have not yet been certified," and noted the judge "referred this back to the Board of Elections."

David Gugerty, the Board of Elections Democratic commissioner, said a meeting is to take place today at 11 a.m.

"We set up a time for all parties to come to the Board of Elections, and a bipartisan team will consult with them and follow the judge's order as to exactly what needs to be recanvassed, including possibly including the write-in votes from the election."

Sahn said if a tie is certified by the board, the village must hold a new election.

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