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Williams wins appeal; he is back on GOP primary ballot for County Legislature

Greg Williams is back on the ballot.

On May 3, a State Supreme Court Judge invalidated the petitions for Mr. Williams, a Mattituck businessman who announced in April that he was running as a Republican candidate for the Suffolk County Legislature.

In that decision, Justice Jerry Garguilo said the petitioner, Catherine Stark, sought an order invalidating Mr. Williams’ petitions claiming they were “permeated with fraud.” The judge’s decision effectively removed Mr. Williams from the ballot.

Mr. Williams appealed to the Appellate Division of State Supreme Court, and on Thursday morning he was told the decision was reversed.

“I’m back on the ballot,” he said.

Ms. Stark is the GOP’s announced candidate for the Legislature; Mr. Williams, a former Southold Town trustee, was not supported as the party’s official choice and said he would run a primary against her.

That primary will be held June 27.

In Thursday’s decision, signed by Maria T. Fasulo, the clerk of the court, the Appellate Division wrote that “Stark failed to meet her burden of demonstrating by clear and convincing evidence that the designating petition was permeated with fraud or that Williams participated in or was chargeable with knowledge of any fraud.”

The decision puts Mr. Williams back on the ballot.

In an email late Thursday afternoon, Suffolk County GOP chairman Jesse Garcia lambasted the Appellate Division decision and sharply attacked Mr. Williams.

“Greg Williams showed his true colors in this case, employing two Democratic Party lawyers – including the local Democratic Committee’s election lawyer – to represent him. After the Supreme Court found that Mr. Williams’s [sic] petitions were permeated with fraud, it’s outrageous that the bulk of the Appellate Division decision speaks of matters that were not in question, for what appears to be the sole purpose of reaching a predetermined, fixed ruling.

“Mr. Williams, however, has shown that in his zeal to get on the ballot, he has sunk to such depths that even the label of RINO does not fully describe his actions.  Getting in bed with the Democratic Party by hiring their clubhouse attorneys speaks volumes to his motives, with a willingness to manipulate election law and procedure.”

In an email to the Times Review Media Group, Mr. Williams said: “As I promised earlier this week, my opponent and her political sponsors failed in their attempt to keep me off the June 27 primary ballot.

“The truth has prevailed. This proves that there is no place in our district for lies, wrongful accusations, dirty tricks and fake news. Voters now will have a choice between me and an opponent who has ineptly done all of those things. I will ALWAYS keep my promises to my constituents. And now I shall work tirelessly, first to win this election and then to serve my constituents.”