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Trugman v. Reichenstein

Decided: May 27, 1958.

JACK TRUGMAN, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
HARRY REICHENSTEIN, CITY CLERK OF THE CITY OF NEWARK, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, MICHAEL A. BONTEMPO, JOHN A. BRADY, JAMES T. CALLAGHAN, RAYMOND V. SANTORO, AND ESSEX COUNTY BOARD OF CANVASSERS, DEFENDANTS-RESPONDENTS



Stanton, Hall and Gaulkin. The opinion of the court was delivered by Stanton, S.j.a.d.

Stanton

The plaintiff was a candidate for the office of councilman at large at a regular municipal election held in the city of Newark on May 13, 1958. Four councilmen at large as well as a mayor and a ward councilman in each of the five wards were to be elected under Plan C of the Faulkner Act, N.J.S.A. 40:69 A -55 to 40:69 A -60.

N.J.S.A. 40:69 A -160 provides in part as follows:

"At the regular municipal election * * * the candidates receiving the greatest number and a majority of votes cast shall be elected to the respective offices; provided, however, that if: * * *

(b) four councilmen at large are to be elected and 2 or more candidates for said office receive a majority of the votes cast in the election , the 4 candidates receiving the greatest number of votes shall be elected; * * *."

The defendant city clerk who supervised the election tabulated the votes received by the ten candidates for councilman at large; the names of the five candidates receiving, the greatest number of votes are as follows:

Michael A. Bontempo 51,633

John A. Brady 50,670

James T. Callaghan 39,067

Raymond V. Santoro 36,703

Jack Trugman 30,137

The total number of voters participating in the election was 106,125. No candidate for councilman at large received a majority vote of the electors participating in the election, namely 53,063. The city clerk was of the opinion that the required majority was 37,572; this figure was obtained by adding the votes received by all ten candidates (300,572), dividing that sum by the number of offices to be filled and the resulting quotient by two. The defendants Bontempo, Brady and Callaghan each received votes in excess of this; the defendant Santoro less than it. The city clerk determined that those three candidates having received a majority, they and the ...


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