CARMEL, N.Y. - Challenger Mike Barile was the top vote-getter in Tuesday’s Republican primary as he and incumbent Councilwoman Suzi McDonough won the contest and the opportunity to be on the ballot in the general election this fall where they will face Democrat Judie Mirra for two open seats on the Town Board.
Barile, who had the endorsement of both the Republican Party and the Independence Party, garnered nearly 40 percent of the vote with 1,209 votes. He has been a resident and businessman in the town of Carmel for over 40 years. He owns Lynlil Associates, a property management company located on Route 6 in Mahopac .
McDonough garnered 31 percent of the votes (949) to take second place. Though she was an incumbent, McDonough was considered the underdog because she had failed to secure the endorsement of the GOP when it held its caucus earlier this summer. However, she was able to force a primary and get on the ballot by securing enough petition signatures.
Lombardi, the Town Board’s deputy supervisor, finished a close third with 881 votes—29 percent of the ballots cast. During his campaign, Lombardi promised to focus on keeping the community safe and to help combat the opioid epidemic. During his tenure on the board, he had sponsored a law that bans the sale of synthetic drugs in the town of Carmel and facilitated bringing D.A.R.E. into Mahopac Middle School. But it was not enough to overcome Barile, who ran an aggressive campaign, promising to change the way the Town Board does business and that he would donate his salary to the town’s youth sports associations.
“I am honored by the number of votes I got,” Barile told Mahopac News. “But politics are a dirty business and I am glad I am not in it for my livelihood. The people were smarter than all that dirty stuff that was coming out.”
Barile said he wasn't surprised by the outcome of the race, but was disappointed in the voter turnout.
“I was surprised that more people didn't vote,” he said. “I was hoping for 5,000. [Editor’s note: 3,053 votes were cast.] I wanted to see a bigger message sent to the people in power.”
Barile said he was happy that McDonough was re-elected because it showed that the voters were making the decision who got to be on the Town Board and not the Republican Committee.
“I am thrilled that Suzi beat Frank,” he said. “I was disappointed that the Republican Committed didn't endorse her. The reason we won was because we ran with integrity and ran a clean, honest campaign.”
Barile promised change during his campaign and said people who follow Carmel politics will notice it right away when he takes office in January.
“You have no idea how hard and fast I will hit the ground running,” he said. “People will be shocked. There will be change.”
McDonough, who has lived in Mahopac/Carmel for more than 55 years and owned several businesses in town, said she was thrilled to be re-elected and felt as though a tremendous weight had been lifted from her shoulders.
“The Republican people spoke,” she said while celebrating the victory with family and friends. “I am so excited. I am absolutely ecstatic that they voted me back in. I will work hard to be their voice and be there for them.”
McDonough, founder of the McDonough Foundation, said she agreed with Barile in that running a clean campaign put her over the top with the voters.
“I ran a positive grassroots campaign,” she said. “That is what the community wanted and that is what we gave them.”