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Ellis defeats Catena for court seat

Tuesday, December 25, 2012
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— A Franklin County Court magistrate has won the last of four judgeships in the Fourth Judicial District of State Supreme Court race from November.

John Ellis defeated Montgomery County Judge Felix Catena by 70 votes after the final paper ballots and affidavits in the race were opened last week.

Catena conceded the race this weekend.

The race’s outcome had centered on about 100 ballots that couldn’t be opened because they were tied up in objections for other races, including the state Senate race between Republican George Amedore and Democrat Cecilia Tkaczyk.

Amedore won the race and acting Supreme Court Justice Guy Tomlinson of Montgomery County certified it last week, but Tkaczyk is vowing a court fight. The court fight will not affect the outcome of the State Supreme Court race.

Prior to last week’s final tally, Catena had held a slight vote lead over Ellis, 135,616-135,555, by the unofficial tally.

The other seats in the State Supreme Court race were decided earlier. Also winning were two Republicans — sitting Supreme Court Judge Joseph Sise of Montgomery County and Rotterdam attorney Thomas Buchanan — and Schenectady County Family Court Judge Christine Clark, a Democrat.

The justices serve 14-year terms and are paid $174,000 annually after three years of raises authorized to begin in 2012. The 4th Judicial District encompasses Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Hamilton, Montgomery, Saratoga, Schenectady, St. Lawrence, Warren and Washington counties.

 
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