Sunday, July 13, 2014

Write-in effort aimed at County Council

October 29. 2013 11:36PM

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Paul Dezinski, a 32-year-old Democrat from Wyoming, has launched a write-in campaign for Luzerne County Council.

It will be an uphill battle for Dezinski to convince thousands of county voters to spell out his name on the electronic voting machines on Nov. 5.

The vote count for the 10 council contenders who received nominations in the May primary ranged from a low of 4,405 for Republican Paul M. DeFabo to a high of 13,360 for Democrat Eileen M. Sorokas.

But more voters cast ballots in general elections, in part because Independent and third-party voters are added to the mix in November.

In the first general election race for County Council under the new home rule government in November 2011, the vote count ranged from 18,867 for Eugene Kelleher up to 25,026 for Rick Morelli.

Though predictions are iffy because Nov. 5 will be only the second County Council race, seasoned political observers estimate council candidates will need at least 15,000 votes next Tuesday to land one of the five open seats.

Dezinski said he is using social media and campaign signs to alert voters to his campaign, and he will be distributing cards at polling places on election day so voters know how to spell his name. Candidates risk losing credit for write-in votes if their name is misspelled.

He said he considered running in the primary but did not complete the paperwork in time. He decided to run for council because he wanted to provide voters with another choice. Eleven people are on the ballot — five Democrats, five Republicans and an Independent.

Dezinski also said he disagrees with four Democratic contenders’ decision to run as a team with billboards, though these candidates say they will vote independently.

“Four of them joining together is like a clique,” Dezinski said. “I would have my own voice, my own vision, if I’m elected.”

He is owner of Paulie D’s Lawn Care and works full-time as an emergency medical technician for Wyoming Medic 27, with 14 years of emergency medical services experience. He also volunteers as a borough firefighter, a fire captain, a board director for Wyoming Hose Co. No. 1 and a member of the Wyoming Recreation Board.

He is a Wyoming Area Secondary Center graduate and completed some college-level courses.

Dezinski said he would focus on reducing crime, attracting businesses and seeking additional revenue and other options to avoid tax increases. He also said he would have an “open-door policy” addressing citizen complaints and concerns.

“I feel I could make a change and move the county forward,” he said.

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