Sensing a political opportunity in the wake of Otsego County Treasurer Dan Crowell’s move to leave office at the end of this year, the county GOP has now officially tapped Cooperstown Village Treasurer Edward Keator Jr. as its candidate for the post.
Because it’s too late for mainstream party candidates to circulate nominating petitions for this year’s election, Keator, 50, of West Oneonta, will run under the banner of the “Common Cents” party, and will appear on the ballot if the Republicans can help him garner 1,000 signatures by Aug. 20.
The Democrats have already embraced Acting Treasurer Henry “Russ” Bachman, a nonaffiliated political independent who was hand-picked by Crowell to fill in for the latter while he is serving on active duty in the U.S. Army Reserves.
“Common sense, sound planning and creative thinking are needed right now to solve the many complex financial problems we face,” Keator said.
The name of the new political organization, Common Cents, he said, “is also a reminder that the money does not belong to the government, but to the hard working taxpayers of Otsego County.”
Local Republicans have complained Crowell’s abrupt announcement last week that he was not running - nearly two weeks after the deadline for candidates to have their name removed from the ballot - was an attempt to hamper the GOP’s ability to take advantage of the opening.
Crowell has said his “difficult” decision grew out of concerns he could be again activated by the military and noting he his now interested in returning to the private sector.
Said County Republican Chairwoman Sheila Ross: “Given the last minute change in the election, we are very pleased that Ed has stepped forward and is willing to serve the people of the county. We should be fortunate to have someone with his experience as our next treasurer.”