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North Castle Names Special Counsel For Ward Vote

The North Castle Town Board appointed a special counsel to oversee the ward referendum.
The North Castle Town Board appointed a special counsel to oversee the ward referendum. Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie

ARMONK, N.Y. -- The North Castle Town Board wants to make sure it has everything in place ahead of next month's special election.

The board approved hiring Gerard Terry, a Long Island-based lawyer, to serve as special counsel for North Castle's ward referendum on Nov. 13.

Terry is legal counsel for the Nassau County Board of Elections and served as special counsel for Hempstead when it considered a ward system.

"He's had a lot of recommendations," Town Supervisor Michael Schiliro said. "He's helped us already."

Schiliro said Terry will cost the town $250 per hour for legal advice and $275 for litigation plus expenses.

Tony Futia, who submitted the petition to establish the ward election, approved of Terry and handed out a packet detailing his communications with the Board of Elections.

The referendum had to be moved off Election Day following an Oct. 9 letter from the Westchester County Board of Elections. The board rejected including the referendum on the Nov. 4 general election ballot because the referendum is not taking place in an odd-numbered year. Regular town government elections are held in odd years in New York state. The board cited state law in rejecting the town's request.

Futia said he knew the referendum couldn't be placed on the general election ballot and said he wanted the referendum to still be on Election Day, but on separate voting machines.

Voting for the ward referendum will take place from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 13 at the Armonk Firehouse, 400 Bedford Road; Banksville Firehouse, 33 Bedford-Banksville Road; and North Castle Community Center, 10 Clove Road.

If a ward system is approved, Town Board members would be elected by districts representing sections of the town. Currently, members are elected at large.

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