Jeff Dunham

GENEVA — Democrats picked up a seat on the Town Board Tuesday, but they fell short of a complete majority.

Voters elected Democrat Bob McCarthy and Republican Jeff Dunham to the board over Democrat Tom Bonacci and Republican Geoff Marshall. That gives the Democrats a 4-1 majority.

“It was a hard-fought but fair election — no animosities,” McCarthy said in a text message to the Times. “We all had the best interest of the town at heart.

“I want to thank those that supported me, and I hope Geoff and Tom will continue their good works for Geneva.”

Dunham expressed similar sentiments: He said he was proud of all the town candidates.

“It never got nasty,” he said by phone. “Everyone was cordial to each other.”

Dunham credited his door-to-door campaign and opposition to some aspects of the comprehensive plan for his win.

“I tried to separate myself and show that I’m different from the other candidates, and I think that made a difference in the end,” he said.

McCarthy and Dunham will fill the seats now held by Republicans Pat Malcuria and Rick Larsen, both of whom decided not to seek re-election.

Dunham said he was not surprised voters chose one Republican and one Democrat to fill the seats. He thinks it sends a good message.

“Probably politics should be this way where you get a Republican, you get a Democrat, it’s 50-50, you talk about ideas,” Dunham said.

Unofficial results had Dunham receiving 561 votes, five more than McCarthy. Bonacci finished with 471 and Marshall 418.

McCarthy is vice president of Phelps Supply. His priorities include protecting the lake, addressing runoff issues and making sure broadband is available townwide. He also wants to work to reduce truck traffic, much of it generated by the landfill, and to preserve the town’s agricultural heritage.

He praised the comprehensive plan during the campaign.

Dunham, a Republican, teaches at Geneva High School and coaches boys soccer. During the campaign, he said he would focus on bringing clean, light industrial and agribusiness jobs to the town.

He expressed concern about the sections of the comprehensive plan calling for 600 new housing units and bike paths.

Although he’ll be new to the board, Dunham knows many of the members, including McCarthy, who was his varsity soccer coach when he was in high school.

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