Election preview: Two GOP candidates face Democrat for two Pelham town board seats, with Dem who left race also on ballot


List of Pelham candidates on the ballot on the Westchester County Board of Elections website.

On Election Day Tuesday, the only competitive race in Pelham is for two at-large town council seats, pitting Republicans Rae Szymanski and Tade Reen against Democrat Kara McLoughlin.

However, voters may face some confusion as Solange Bitol-Hansen remains on the Democratic line for the town board, though she dropped out of the race in June because of career changes and did not campaign.

“Solange has said she’d step down if elected despite having withdrawn, and asked her supporters to vote for Kara McLoughlin,” Pelham Town Democratic Chairwoman Marin Zielinski said in an email on Monday.

The Pelham Examiner has not received a statement from Bitol-Hansen, and she did not respond to an emailed request for comment.

Voters can only select two of the four candidates in the race, so it’s unclear how many votes Bitol-Hansen’s request would swing. If Bitol-Hansen were to win and resign, the position on the council would be filled by appointment.

In an email to supporters last week, the Pelham Democratic Party said, “Kara’s original slate-mate dropped out of the race early on” but did not mention the ballot issue.

Szymanski is an incumbent, while GOP Councilman Timothy Case is not seeking reelection. Town board members serve four-year terms.

Republican Town Supervisor Dan McLaughlin, Town Clerk Antoinette Clemente and Receiver of Taxes Catherine Mazzaro are running without Democratic opposition. The receiver of taxes serves a four-year term; the supervisor and town clerk are on the ballot every two years.

In 2019, Democrats Kristen Burke and Maura Curtin won the other two seats on the five-member council, breaking the GOP’s long-running hold the town’s legislative body.

In the Village of Pelham, the Democratic slate is running unopposed. Mayor Chance Mullen is seeking reelection alongside trustees Mike Carpenter and Lisa Hill-Ries and newcomer Donald Otondi. Trustee Ariel Spira-Cohen is leaving the board.

This is the second Village of Pelham election to be held in November after a 2019 referendum approved moving the date from March. Hanan Kamal Eldahry, Kim McGreal and Russell Solomon ran unopposed that year and make up the balance of the all-Democratic village board. All terms are two years for the seven seats on the board of trustees.

Pelham and Westchester Candidates

(* – indicates incumbent)

Westchester County

County Executive

  • Christine Sculti (R)
  • George Latimer (D)*

County Clerk

  • Scooter Scott (R) 
  • Timothy Idoni (D)*

County Legislator (District 11) 

  • Terry Clements (D)

Town of Pelham


  • Dan McLaughlin (R)*

Town Council (two seats)

  • Rae Szymanski (R)*
  • Tade Reen (R)
  • Kara McLoughlin (D)
  • Solange Bitol-Hansen (D) – dropped out of the race

Town Clerk

  • Antoinette Clemente (R)*

Receiver of Taxes

  • Catherine Mazzaro (R)*

Village of Pelham


  • Chance Mullen (D)*

Trustees (three)

  • Mike Carpenter (D)*
  • Lisa Hill-Ries (D)*
  • Donald Otondi (D)

State and County Ballot Proposals 

State Ballot Proposal 1: Amending the Apportionment and Redistricting Process

This proposed constitutional amendment would freeze the number of state senators at 63, amend the process for the counting of the state’s population, delete certain provisions that violate the United States Constitution, repeal and amend certain requirements for the appointment of the co-executive directors of the redistricting commission and amend the manner of drawing district lines for congressional and state legislative offices. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

State Ballot Proposal 2: Right to Clean Air, Clean Water, and a Healthful Environment

The proposed amendment to Article I of the New York Constitution would establish the right of each person to clean air and water and a healthful environment. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

State Ballot Proposal 3: Eliminating Ten-Day-Advance Voter Registration Requirement

The proposed amendment would delete the current requirement in Article II, Section 5 that a citizen be registered to vote at least ten days before an election and would allow the Legislature to enact laws permitting a citizen to register to vote less than ten days before the election. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

State Ballot Proposal 4: Authorizing No-Excuse Absentee Ballot Voting

The proposed amendment would delete from the current provision on absentee ballots the requirement that an absentee voter must be unable to appear at the polls by reason of absence from the county or illness or physical disability. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

State Ballot Proposal 5: Increasing the Jurisdiction of the New York City Civil Court

The proposed amendment would increase the New York City Civil Court’s jurisdiction by allowing it to hear and decide claims for up to $50,000 instead of the current jurisdictional limit of $25,000. Shall the proposed amendment be approved?

Westchester County Proposal 1

Should the County of Westchester amend its laws to enact a new and comprehensive code of ethics, including a detailed code of conduct, updated disclosure requirements, and clarifying the structure and authority of the Board of Ethics to oversee, implement and enforce the law?

Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church School in the Village of Pelham Manor and at the Daronco Town House in the Village of Pelham.