Whatever momentum Brockport Mayor Maria “Connie” Castañeda got from her recent legal success wasn't enough to carry her to victory in yesterday’s village elections. Castañeda was soundly defeated in her re-election bid by Margay Blackman, a current village trustee and retired professor of anthropology at SUNY Brockport, 613 votes to 355 votes, according to unofficial results from the county Board of Elections.
Castañeda has been a divisive figure in Brockport politics. Her critics accuse her of wanting to dissolve the village — though Castañeda has never said so publicly. Castañeda says she’s the victim of dirty politics and that her only goal has been prudent financial stewardship.
Castañeda also faced misconduct charges stemming from the alleged illegal rental of rooms in her Brockport home. Those charges were recently dismissed, but Castañeda still faces code violation charges in the village. She’s suggested that she may sue over her arrest.
It's unlikely that Castañeda's defeat means the end of the dissolution question in Brockport. The 2010 vote, in which Brockport residents rejected dissolution, was driven by landlords who operate in the village. They could easily petition to hold another vote, despite the fact that no one on the village board appears to support dissolution at this time.
The Revitalize Brockport ticket, which included Blackman, newcomer Valerie Ciciotti, and incumbent trustee Carol Hannan swept to victory last night. Ciciotti and Hannan will serve four-year terms on the village board.