Today’s news:

Anthony Como sworn in as city councilman

The city's Elections Board certified Republican Anthony Como's modest win over Democrat Elizabeth Crowley Friday in the District 30 election to replace former City Councilman Dennis Gallagher, a spokesman for the agency said.

Como, a former Elections Board commissioner and aide to state Sen. Serphin Maltese (R-Glendale), defeated Crowley, a cousin of U.S. Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-Jackson Heights), by a mere 41 votes, according to the board's final tally. Como said he filled out paperwork earlier this week with the city clerk and is expected to step into office this week.

"I am humbled and honored to have been elected by the residents of the 30th Council District," said Como, who was sworn in to the City Council earlier this week. "Moving forward, it is important that we work together as a community to ensure that our district continues to thrive and remains a wonderful place to live."

Como received 2,442 votes in the election, while Crowley got 2,401 votes, the Elections Board spokesman said. Republican Thomas Ognibene, a 2005 mayoral candidate who previously held District 30's Council seat, received 2,110 votes, while Democrat Charles Ober, a Ridgewood civic leader, got 766 votes, the spokesman said.

Como will hold the seat through the end of the year. A second election will be held in November to determine who will fill the seat in 2009 and a third election will take place in November of that year. The same winner of the next two elections may run for one more four-year term in 2011.

Ognibene said he did not plan to run again in this fall's election. Crowley and Ober could not be reached for comment.

Joseph Mondello, the New York Republican State Committee chairman, said he was glad that the district's seat remained in GOP control.

"This is a tremendous victory for Anthony Como, Queens Republicans and Republicans across the state," he said. "It is just the latest in a continuing trend, which demonstrates that New York's Republican Party is on track for a very successful fall."

District 30 covers Maspeth, Middle Village, Ridgewood, Glendale and slivers of Richmond Hill, Forest Hills and Woodhaven.

The race followed Gallagher's resignation in April as part of a deal that kept him out of prison after he pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a 52-year-old Middle Village grandmother at his district office on Metropolitan Avenue in July 2007.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.

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