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Suit that calls for Freeport voter lists to be purged discussed in court

JoAnn Squillace represents four Freeport candidates asking Nassau

JoAnn Squillace represents four Freeport candidates asking Nassau County to remove the names of dead and former residents from its voter rolls. She was in court Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017 in Mineola. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Attorneys for the Nassau County Board of Elections must file briefs by the end of the month for a voter registration list lawsuit.

The lawsuit, filed by four candidates for elected positions in Freeport, alleges that residents who have died or no longer live in Freeport remain on the voter registration list. The candidates have asked the court to compel the Board of Elections and village clerk’s office to purge the list.

The next municipal election is March 21.

On Thursday, the candidates’ lawyer, JoAnn Squillace, and attorneys for the Board of Elections and the village clerk discussed the next step in State Supreme Court in Mineola. They did not come to a resolution, though the attorneys said they would not force the village clerk’s attorney to file a brief because the clerk’s office has no authority to change the voter registration list.

“Everybody agreed the clerk has no role in this,” said Martin Connor, a lawyer representing Village Clerk Pamela Walsh Boening.

“Dead people are not voting in Nassau County,” said Bonnie Garone, an attorney for the board of elections’ Democratic commissioner. “In our view this proceeding is frivolous.”

Squillace said her clients — candidates Stephen Drummond for mayor, Angel Vargas and Philip Prestamo for trustees, and Dawn Warren for village justice — want to ensure no fraudulent votes are cast.

Lawyers for the board of elections must file their papers by Feb. 28. Squillace has until March 6 to respond.

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