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Montgomery County GOP announce candidates

Shown is Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort who spoke during the Montgomery County Republican Committee rally at the Winner's Circle in Fonda on Wednesday. Candidates running in this year's election were also introduced. (The Leader-Herald/Briana O'Hara)

FONDA — The Montgomery County Republican Committee on Wednesday announced several candidates running for election this year many of whom are seeking re-election.

“We have great candidates running this year that are either running for their first time, or they’re seeking re-election,” said Montgomery County Republican Committee Chairman Michael McMahon. “Our party is in great shape, I think we have a lot of work to do, but then again we always do. We have some challenges ahead, we have a committee that’s strong, and we have a strong leadership, so we’re in good shape.”

Some members of the GOP who will be running in this year’s election include: Incumbent Matt Ossenfort for Montgomery County Executive; Michael Dayian for Montgomery County Family Court Judge; incumbent Tom DiMezza for Amsterdam Town supervisor; incumbent Patrick Russo for City of Amsterdam First Ward Alderman; David Gomula for City of Amsterdam Second Ward Alderman; incumbent Betty Sanders for town of Palatine councilwoman; William MacLauchlin for town of Palatine Supervisor; Robert Rhinehardt for town of Charleston highway superintendent; incumbent Eric Mead for town of Florida Supervisor; incumbent Harold Alikonis for town of Florida councilman; Mark Quiri for town of Florida councilman; Tim Jones for town of Minden highway superintendent; incumbent Joseph Hanifin for town of Minden highway superintendent; and incumbent Cheryl Reese for town of Minden supervisor.

“I think today for us as a group is a lot about unity and coming together, and really carrying that energy and enthusiasm forward, not only Montgomery County but [Fulton County] together, and I think this is really the start of something exciting as far as the two counties coming together,” Ossenfort said.

Ossenfort, if re-elected, will be serving his last term as county executive. Ossenfort was first elected in Nov. 2013 and began his first term in 2014 as the county made the transition from a board of supervisors to the Montgomery County Legislature.

The Leader-Herald/Briana O'Hara Shown is Montgomery County Republican Committee Chairman Michael McMohan who spoke during the event on Wednesday at the Winner's Circle in Fonda. Several candidates at the event introduced themselves while remaining socially distanced.

“I am incredibly proud of the work the team has done. I am not a person about ‘me’ I am a person about ‘we’ and that’s with the environment, the culture we created, it’s about working together, being there for each other even falling on the sword for each other if we have to,” Ossenfort said. “By doing that, we’ve collectively been able to move Montgomery County forward.”

Ossenfort listed the many accomplishments the county has had, one of which being all the work done at the former Beech-Nut site in Canajoharie.

He said over the course of seven years, the site will be completely clean this year, finish all the demolition and will “hopefully” have a project they can announce within a few weeks that will get people back to work on the site and make “Canajoharie a destination for years to come.”

Ossenfort said although COVID-19 continues to impact the county, positivity rates are starting to decrease and with vaccinations being distributed, he thinks, “we’re going to have a heck of a year.”

“Let’s go out and let’s show the democrats in this county that we’re a strong committee, that we’re going to have big numbers with our petitions and we’re really going to work our tails off,” he said. “I’m looking forward to running, we have some really great candidates both countywide, and all across the county on a local level.”

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