Ryan, Hayes set to compete in two Ulster county executive elections

The matchup for two elections for Ulster County executive was set this week with Democrat Pat Ryan and Conservative Jack Hayes filing petitions for the November general election and no other candidates joining the race to force primaries.

Ryan and Hayes already had been nominated by Ulster’s Democratic and Republican committees to run in an April 30 special election to be county executive through the end of this year to complete Mike Hein’s unexpired term. Hein departed in February after 10 years as county executive to take a job as commissioner of the state Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance.

Ryan, runner-up in last year’s seven-way Democratic primary for the 19th Congressional District seat, was also the party’s endorsed candidate to run for a full term as county executive, but faced a possible June 25 primary against former Woodstock Supervisor Jeff Moran. Moran said on Facebook on Thursday that he was unable to collect the 750 petition signatures he needed by the 5 p.m. deadline that day.

Hayes, a former Gardiner supervisor and county legislator, is an enrolled Conservative and chairman of the county’s Conservative Party, but has been backed by the county Republicans and will run on both the GOP and Conservative ballot lines (Ryan has three lines: Democratic, Working Families and Independence). No registered Republicans petitioned to compete with Hayes to seek a four-year term as county executive, setting the stage for a pair of Ryan-Hayes elections on April 30 and Nov. 5.

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