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Four challengers taken off Babylon Village election ballots 

Kelly Peckholdt, left, Aidan Lyons, Kathy Hoffman and

Kelly Peckholdt, left, Aidan Lyons, Kathy Hoffman and TJ Golub were removed from the Babylon Village election ballot. Credit: Johnny Milano/JOHNNY MILANO

Four candidates were knocked off the March 16 election ballot in Babylon Village after the Suffolk County Board of Elections determined the signatures on their petition had misidentified the vote as a primary.

The Vote for Babylon party’s signature petition was ruled invalid in a 2-0 vote during a special Board of Elections meeting on Feb. 17.

The candidates who lost their ballot spots are Kathy Hoffman, who is running for mayor, along with Aidan Lyons, village chamber of commerce president Kelly Peckholdt and TJ Golub, who are seeking the three open trustee positions this month.

In a statement to residents, the Vote For Babylon party said they were notified on Feb. 20 of the BOE’s decision after local officials and news organizations found out. The party has encouraged residents to include their names on the ballot via the write-in option.

"If anything, we are even more determined and motivated to take back our Village and give a choice and a voice to the residents of Babylon," the statement read.

Katz said in a text message the four candidates were mailed the decision on Feb. 17. Newsday inquired and received a copy of the BOE minutes Feb. 19.

The Vote for Babylon slate members said they will continue to seek those seats as write-in candidates.

Deborah "Debbie" Maya Melito, who is seeking a trustee position on the Reimagine Babylon party line, remains on the ballot.

The incumbents seeking reelection are Mayor Mary Adams and trustees Anthony Cardali, Frank Seibert and Dominic Bencivenga — all of whom are running as a slate with the Better Babylon party. Adams on Oct. 30 replaced former Mayor Ralph Scordino, who died Oct. 29.

Adams and the Better Babylon party did not respond to requests for comment.

The minutes from the meeting where the petition was invalidated were signed by Democratic Commissioner Anita Katz and Deputy Republican Commissioner Erin McTiernan.

According to the BOE minutes, Paul M. Cannella, a village resident, filed the objections to the petition. Cannella did not respond to requests for comment.

The board of elections threw out other objections Cannella filed: failure to properly set forth the public office being sought; failure to name a committee to fill vacancies and failure to contain an emblem of the party. Those objections were determined insufficient because they didn’t create voter confusion or render the petition fatally defective.

The village's board of trustees consists of Adams and four trustees, including Robyn Silvestri, who will not be up for reelection until 2023.

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