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Herkimer Co. DA Klosner gets GOP nomination for 5th Supreme Court Judge

HERKIMER, N.Y. (WKTV) - Herkimer County Assistant District Attorney Scott Klosner has been selected by Herkimer County Republicans as their candidate for Supreme Court Justice in the 5th Judicial District.

The seat became unexpectedly vacant with the retirement late last month of former Justice Michael Daley. Herkimer County Republican Chair Sylvia Rowan said Klosner was selected from among several potential candidates who had expressed an interest in the position.

The candidates were reviewed by the Herkimer County Republican Town Chairs, the County Republican Executive Committee and the delegates to the Fifth Judicial Convention.

“This election will be anything but typical. We have a number of candidates throughout the six-county judicial district who are interested in serving on the Supreme Court. We, of course, are most interested in keeping a sitting Supreme Court Justice here in
Herkimer County. To do that, we need a strong candidate. We feel that Scott is that candidate,” Rowan said.

Prescott (Scott) Klosner, 40, of Ilion, was appointed as a Herkimer County Assistant District Attorney in 2000 and promoted to the position of First Assistant District Attorney in 2002. In his capacity as First Assistant District Attorney, Klosner has tried numerous felony cases including the recent trial which resulted in the conviction of previously-convicted murderer, Donato Nappi.

A 1997 Syracuse University College of Law graduate, Klosner worked in private practice in Herkimer from 1997 to 2000. He received his BA from Siena College in 1993.

He and his wife, Jacy, live in Ilion with their three sons.

Rowan said it will take a highly-motivated candidate to run a vigorous campaign across the far-flung judicial district. Besides Herkimer County, the district includes Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, Lewis and Jefferson Counties.

With Daley’s retirement, there are now four open seats that will be filled in November by the top vote-getters from throughout the district, regardless of their home county While there are no open seats in Onondaga, there has been interest expressed in the Supreme Court by potential candidates in that county. The other three open seats exist in Jefferson, Lewis and Oneida Counties.

The party candidates will be selected at the Judicial Convention in September. Onondaga County, by virtue of its size, controls just less than 50 percent of the weighted votes at that convention. There has been a “gentlemen’s agreement” that has allowed smaller counties to pool their votes and keep sitting justices within their counties, but there is no formal guarantee that agreement will be honored, Rowan said.

“Because of the circumstances, we’re under a very tight time frame. If Herkimer County is to keep a justice position here, we’re going to need to work together for our candidate,” Rowan said.

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