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Joseph Johnson, Darrin Harsch to remain off voting ballot after judge dismisses lawsuit

Mastic Beach trustee candidates Joseph Johnson and Darrin Harsch will remain off the voting ballot later this month after a state Supreme Court judge dismissed their lawsuit.

Suffolk Supreme Court Justice Joseph A. Santorelli threw out their suit last week because it didn’t name all the parties involved, Suffolk County Court public information officer Mary Porter said.

The two candidates, who were running on the New Wave party line, filed the suit last month after the Suffolk County Board of Elections ruled their nominating petitions didn’t meet the 100-signature threshold to get on the March 15 ballot.

State election law mandates a candidate must have at least 100 valid signatures from registered Suffolk County voters in order to run for village trustee.

Election law does allow for Johnson and Harsch, both of whom lost trustee bids last year, to run as write-in candidates, which they plan to do.

“I was disappointed,” Johnson said regarding the court decision.

Village resident Michelle Wilkinson objected to Johnson’s and Harsch’s petition, charging that many of their 190 signatures were invalid.

The names of incumbent trustees Betty Manzella and Bruce Summa, both of whom are running on the New Horizon party line, will be on the ballot. All told, the four candidates are vying for two seats.

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