LETTER: 20 current and ex-West New York residents want probe into BOE race


In a letter to the editor, 20 current and former West New York residents are calling for an investigation into Tuesday’s board of education race over an extremely high number of vote-by-mail ballots. West New York BOE

Dear editor,

We, the undersigned, call for an urgent investigation into the West New York Board of Education election on November 7, 2017.

We believe that there are significant anomalies in the election results that require an official investigation, to ensure the election was conducted in a fair and legal manner.

Official results from the Hudson County Clerk’s office show that the winning three candidates were: Maite Fernandez (1,952), Damarys Gonzalez (1,897) and Jose Mendoza (1,873).

The official results show that a significant proportion of the votes for the winning three candidates were achieved from Mail-In Ballots.

For each candidate, more than one third of their votes (at least 650 votes per candidate) came from Mail-In Ballots. This seems like an extraordinarily high volume of Mail-Ins, both as a percentage of the total, and in terms of the absolute number.

We compared the amount of Mail-In ballots to recent history in West New York. We were shocked to discover that the Children First team in 2017 received more Mail-In Ballots than Hillary Clinton did in the 2016 Presidential election.

Whereas Hillary Clinton achieved 515 Mail-Ins in 2016, this year’s Children First team received more than 650 per candidate – despite the much lower turnout in 2017.

In the 2016 WNY Board of Education election, the winning candidates received 519 Mail-In ballots between them (around 2.9% of the total votes).

Rolling forward to 2017, we now see 1,969 Mail-In ballots for the three winning candidates, a 400% increase which now represents almost 19% of the total votes cast. Something does not seem right.

Comparing the amount of Mail-In votes received by the winning candidates in other Hudson County towns, makes the West New York results looks even more questionable:

Guttenberg: 3.3%
Hoboken: 2.5%
Secaucus: 1.9%
West New York: 18.6%

The proportion of Mail-In votes from surrounding towns makes it very difficult to dispute that the West New York result looks abnormal. Hoboken, with its potentially high proportion of professionals working in Manhattan, has a much smaller amount of Mail-Ins compared to the square mile town of West New York.

We ask the Hudson County Clerk’s office to urgently investigate what took place in the West New York election on Tuesday.

Were the Mail-In ballots overwhelmingly sent from a particular address or building? Were there any anomalies or common patterns in the handwriting on the forms? Is there a particular demographic which have a disproportionate share of these votes?

We encourage any WNY residents that arrived to the polls on Tuesday to discover that they had been marked down as mail-ins to step forward and assist.

In addition, any residents who received visits from people offering to help with their mail-in ballot, again please step forward. You can contact us at WNYresidents@gmail.com with any information regarding what occurred in West New York.

Thanks, and we look forward to having this matter resolved expediently so that the school board can once again focus on the children of West New York.

Mr. Angel Barquin
Mr. Nicholas Behncke
Mr. Chuck Betancourt
Ms. Bea Betancourt
Ms. Michele Bill
Mr. Kevin Borrell
Mr. Joel Campos-Alvis
Mr. Matthew Cheng *
Mr. Gregory E. Cruz
Mr. Todd DeWitt
Mr. Kevin Livermore
Mr. Thomas Leung
Ms. Ann Masters
Mr. Frank Miquelli
Mr. Alex Navas
Mr. Danny Luis Parrales
Ms. Nadya Pena
Ms. Lorena Portillo **
Ms. Melinda Saunders
Mr. Ronald Scheurle ***

* This is the personal opinion of Mr. Cheng, and does not reflect the view of the West New York Board of Education
** This is the personal opinion of Ms. Portillo, and does not reflect the view of the West New York Board of Education
*** This is the personal opinion of Mr. Scheurle, and does not reflect the view of the West New York Board of Education

Warning: A non-numeric value encountered in /home/hcvcp/public_html/wp-content/themes/Hudson County View/includes/wp_booster/td_block.php on line 353


  1. First people to ask are WNY Housing Authority employees and Board members.. Rueben Vargas and Silvia Acosta. These two and their friendly Security Guards made sure that tenants in the Housing Buildings voted their way. Scare tactics for sure.. Hats off to them as they worked to achieve victory. All future WNY elections will be won this way in favor of who controls the access to Housing buildings plus 5001-5101, 5601 and 5701 park ave. Building Access to this voting block is the key to victory…Get ready for King Roque WNY.

  2. It is laughable that at least 5 of the 20 signatories who hold up Hillary Clinton to attempt to win their seriously flawed argument wouldn’t be caught in this Galaxy ever voting for her. What takes the cake is the highly selective memories of the two signatories who ran as commissioner candidates in 2015. Their Column D slate garnered 1,846 mail in votes, 484 MORE mail in votes than the winning incumbent Column C mail in vote tally of 1,362
    Put another way, the challengers secured 35.53% MORE mail in votes than Mayor Roque’slate in 2015. Funny. Did the two signatories of this letter who ran on Column D in 2015 cry ‘foul!’ when THEY GOT SIGNIFICANTLY MORE MAIL IN BALLOTS THAN ROQUE’S SLATE?!!! heck no. That is hypocrisy.