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Singas defeats Scotto in Democratic primary for Nassau DA

Bob Goodale, from Mattituck, casts his vote for

Bob Goodale, from Mattituck, casts his vote for party primaries at Mattituck-Cutchogue Jr. Sr High School on Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. Credit: Randee Daddona

Acting Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas easily defeated former prosecutor Michael Scotto in the Democratic primary for district attorney Thursday.

With 99 percent of precincts reporting Thursday night, Singas had a nearly 3-1 lead over Scotto, according to the county Board of Elections. Turnout was only 3 percent.

In Riverhead, GOP town board member Jodi Giglio, who had the town party's endorsement, narrowly defeated incumbent Supervisor Sean Walter.

In Islip, attorney Thomas Licari of Kismet defeated former Suffolk Legis. Ricardo Montano of Brentwood to win the Democratic line for town supervisor.

Montano led a slate of Democratic insurgent candidates in Islip for town clerk, receiver of taxes and for two town council seats -- all of whom lost to party-backed candidates.

With heavy rain, few marquee matchups and a rare Thursday election, turnout in many locations appeared to be low.

Singas campaigned on her record of fighting public corruption, touting probes of the county's contracting system and the travel records of state lawmakers. She also proposed state legislation that would allow prosecutors to charge heroin dealers with homicide in fatal overdoses.

Singas had the backing of the county Democratic Party and a campaign war chest of more than $800,000, according to recent state campaign finance reports. She was appointed acting district attorney after her Democratic predecessor, Kathleen Rice, was elected to Congress.

Scotto, the former chief of the labor racketeering unit and rackets bureau in the Manhattan district attorney's office, had about $13,000 on hand, according to Board of Elections filings.

Scotto had campaigned aggressively against Singas, arguing that her public corruption probes came only after reports in the news media. Scotto also wanted the district attorney's office to more aggressively fight heroin abuse through more undercover informants and court-ordered wiretaps.

Singas will take on GOP Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray in the Nov. 3 general election.

Riverhead Town elections

A steady stream of voters Thursday morning came to the Wading River Congregational Church to vote in Town of Riverhead elections, where Republicans were in a heated primary for town supervisor and council seats.

GOP voters in Riverhead also were to select candidates for town council while Republicans, Independence and Conservative party primaries were held for Riverhead town justice.

Joseph DeMonte, 78, of Wading River, said he thought Giglio would do a good job as town supervisor.

"She has her thumb on the issues," he said, which include the redevelopment of The Enterprise Park at Calverton, known as EPCAL.

Ken Messina, 71, and a retired banker, said he supported Walter. "As far as I'm concerned he's an honest individual who's doing what he thinks is right for the town," Messina said. His top concerns include the redevelopment of EPCAL and the increasing number of immigrants in the town.

Glen Cove elections

In Glen Cove, Mayor Reginald Spinello, a member of the Independence Party, won a Republican primary against Glen Cove City Councilman Anthony Gallo Jr. Spinello, who was endorsed by the Nassau Republican Party.

GOP voters also selecting six of 11 candidates for Glen Cove City Council. The winners were Joseph Capobianco, Pamela Panzenbeck, Nick DiLeo Jr., Kristina Heuser, Efraim Spagnoletti and Roderick Watson.

Long Beach elections

In Long Beach, voters picked three of five Democratic candidates for City Council with competing slates backed by feuding party leaders -- Nassau Democratic chairman Jay Jacobs and Long Beach Democratic chairman Michael Zapson.

The winners were incumbents Anthony Eramo and Leoncio Torres, backed by Zapson, and Nassau Community College professor Anissa Moore, who was supported by Jacobs.

Long Beach Independence Party voters also selected three of six City Council candidates for the party's nomination.

Three Republicans -- Verizon manager Brian Higgins, marketing strategist Angelo Lomonte and Fordham Law School attorney Catherine Quinn -- won the primary.

Long Beach resident William Negin, 87, said this year's vote was caused by infighting between Zapson and Jacobs.

"I'm not sure either one is greatest thing for Long Beach," Negin said.

Sonny Goldstein said she was voting with the incumbent ticket nominated by Zapson's Long Beach party.

"I think people outside Long Beach like to put candidates on the council," Goldstein said. "There's one slate of candidates that have been here working hard since Sandy and they deserve to be re-elected."

Islip Town elections

In Bay Shore, 27 people had shown up to vote at Bay Shore Senior High School by 5 p.m., a number that polling coordinator Roger Troise said was low due to factors including the weather.

"Primaries are always slow but the rain likely held people up from coming," Troise said. "We've had people coming in saying they were here Tuesday to vote. Not many people were aware at first that Thursday was the day."

Only a dozen voters came between 6 a.m. and noon, Troise said.

"We have six districts in this polling place, so you'd expect more," he said. "The worst part about it is we still have to pay for all this. Those running in primaries should have to pay."

More than 10 elections workers sat at the voting tables, sipping coffee, snacking or playing Scrabble on their cellphones.

"It's more like a 16-hour day for us once we can get everything wrapped up," one worker said. "But we're here for whoever wants to come vote. It's just not that many this time."

Judicial, council races in Nassau, Suffolk

Town council primaries were also held in Smithtown (Republican), Huntington (Working Families), Southampton and East Hampton (Independence).

Independence and Working Families party voters in Southampton were to vote for town justice, as were Independence and Republican party voters in Southold.

Nassau Green Party and Independence Party voters were to make their picks in judicial races for County Court, District Court and Surrogate's Court.

In Suffolk, Green Party voters were to pick candidates for Family Court and District Court judge.

With Sarah Armaghan, John Asbury, Laura Figueroa, Rick Brand and David Schwartz

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