Livingston County Sheriff candidates are Undersheriff James Szczesniak, left, and Sheriff's Investigator Thomas Dougherty, right.
Dougherty, Szczesniak split primary results
EDITOR’S NOTE: Due to a transcription error at The Livingston County News, the Republican primary vote total for candidate Jim Szczesniak was reported with a higher tally. The error has been corrected and the correct total appears in the report below.
By Howard W. Appell and Ben Beagle
Thomas Dougherty appears likely to win the Republican Party Primary for Livingston County sheriff, but the race may not yet be over. James Szczesniak had the slimmest of leads in the Conservative Party Primary, based on unofficial results from the Livingston County Board of Elections.
Unofficial results for the sheriff’s primaries were announced at 11 p.m. Tuesday for all 27 consolidated election districts.
Dougherty received 3,926 votes, or 50.89 percent, to 3,769 votes, or 48.86 percent for Szczesniak in the Republican Primary, according to unofficial results.
Szczesniak is the current Livingston County Undersheriff and Dougherty is an Investigator in the department. They are the only two declared candidates for sheriff.
Turnout was outstanding for a primary, with about 45 percent of registered Republicans participating.
In the Conservative primary, Szczesniak received 159 votes to Dougherty’s 158 — or 50 percent to 49.69 percent, according to unofficial results.
“We clearly knew it would be a tight race and that’s what’s been delivered,” Szczesniak said.
Szczesniak said the campaign will take a close look at the results — they are awaiting the results of absentee ballots in the Conservative Primary — before they “determine the future of this election.”
All available and received absentee votes were included in the totals reported by the Livingston County Board of Elections. Unofficial reports said that as many as 112 absentees Republican votes can still be received by mail and counted over the next five days — an inadequate quantity to reverse the Dougherty lead in the Republican contest. The number of possible absentee ballots which still might be received in the Conservative Primary is not known.
If Szczesniak is able to maintain his lead in the Conservative Primary he would have a line on the ballot for the Nov. 5 general election when all registered voters, not just Republicans and Conservatives, will be able to participate.
Dougherty did not return telephone calls seeking comment Tuesday night.
The Livingston County Republican Committee also had primary for Election District 1, which is in the town of Groveland. Three candidates were vying for two spots.
Gregory Adamson and Roxanne Adamson were the top two vote getters in the three-way race for two positions.
Gregory Adamson tallied 131 votes, or 39.94 percent, while Roxanne Adamson received 106 votes, or 32.32 percent. Bruce A. Dehm was third with 89 votes, or 27.13 percent, according to unofficial results for the county Board of Elections.
Only registered Republican voters in Groveland were eligible to vote in the Republican Committee primary.