Cooper, Fedele elected to North East Town Board

NORTH EAST — Ready to take part in one of this country’s most important governmental processes, registered voters in the town of North East went to the NorthEast-Millerton Library Annex on Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 2, to vote for their choice of candidates to fill the two open seats on the North East Town Board.

Incumbent Ralph Fedele (D) and newcomer Griffin Cooper (D) won the election, while another newcomer, Meg Winkler (North East/Millerton Non-Partisan party line), came in third place.

The polls were open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the Library Annex.

After casting their vote, local residents were invited to treat themselves to something sweet at the NorthEast-Millerton Library’s annual Election Day Bake Sale, which was organized in the Annex’s lobby from the time the polls opened until supplies ran out. Profits from the sale went to support the library.

The Dutchess County Board of Elections (BOE) published the unofficial 2021 Election results on its website, www.elections.dutchessny.gov, in the late hours of Tuesday evening, Nov. 2.

BOE Unofficial results

There were a total of 624 ballots counted for the town of North East. Out of that total number, Cooper led with 352 votes, followed by Fedele with 332 votes and Winkler with 213 votes. There were also five write-in votes.

While Cooper will be starting his first term on the North East Town Board, Fedele will be commencing his third full term in office.

Giving thanks to everyone who voted, Cooper said, “It’s so important for the residents of small communities across our country to have the kind of direct impact on democracy that voting allows for. For those who cast their vote for me, I hope to reinforce their trust. For those who did not, I will work to earn their trust through the way I serve the town of North East during my term.”

Taking into account the significant changes the town and village have seen over the past few years, Cooper noted that while those changes can bring some exciting possibilities, “it is important that those folks who have spent generations living and working here are not forgotten and do not feel left behind.

“I feel it is my duty to help make North East an affordable, easy place to live,” he said, “not only for those looking to make North East their new home, but also for those folks who have called our town home for many years and have helped to build it into the great community we love today.”

Delighted by the success of the Fedele-Cooper ticket and encouraged by the involvement of everyone who came out to vote, Fedele said he was really gratified with the election’s results.

Reminiscing about his 34 years in the community, he said, “I’ve gotten to know a lot of people, I made a lot of friends… and I listen to all their concerns. People are concerned about taxes and essential services like ambulance, police and fire service, and I listen to both sides — both the left and the right — and I try to pick and choose what I think is the truth and I try to bring everybody together in the middle.”

As he kicks off his third term in office, Fedele said he’s looking forward to rolling up his sleeves and working with town Supervisor Chris Kennan and a reenergized Town Board.

Additionally, he said he thought Winkler did a very credible job running in this year’s election and praised her energy and interest in town government.

Campaigning under the Democratic party line, current North East Town Justice Casey McCabe ran uncontested for another term on the bench and won with a total of 446 votes. McCabe will begin her fourth four-year term in office come Jan. 1.

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