Albion village elections may go independent

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 December 2013 at 12:00 am

ALBION – The days of voting for Republican and Democratic candidates in village of Albion elections may be over.

The Albion Republican Committee wants to see the elections in the future limited to candidates on independent party lines. The Republican Committee last week officially voted to have candidates run on independent-only party lines.

“We think if it is nonpartisan you would get a wider range of candidates to step forward,” said Dawn Allen, the Albion GOP chairwoman.

The resolution will need the support of the Albion Democratic Committee to take effect. The next election is in March and includes the mayor and at least two trustee positions.

Democratic Party leaders have discussed the issue the past year but haven’t reached a conclusion, said Sandra Walter, the Democratic Party leader in Albion. She expects the group will meet again soon to talk about whether to support the move to independent elections.

The other villages in Orleans – Holley, Lyndonville and Medina – all have independent-only candidates, who tend to run on party lines such as “The Village Party,” “The Taxpayer Party,”“The Family Party,” as well as others.

Rather than securing the support of the Republican or Democratic Party leaders, independent candidates would pass petitions signed by a small percentage of village residents in order to be on the ballot.

Allen thinks the move would give more power to the candidates and residents. Right now both Republican and Democratic committees include some members who don’t live in the village. That means people from outside the village are currently helping to pick who runs for the village offices.