FREDONIA – It appears there will be a contested race for the office of county district attorney when voters head out to the polls for the 2016 November general elections.
The Post-Journal is reporting that the Chautauqua County Republican Committee has tapped 49 year-old Jason Schmidt as the GOP candidate for district attorney. Schmidt will square off against current acting district attorney Patrick Swanson, a Democrat who was appointed to the post at the start of this year when former DA David Foley left the post to take over as county judge.
Schmidt is a former prosecutor who currently holds a criminal defense practice in the north county. He relocated from New York City to the Fredonia area in 2003. He spent five years working part-time in the DA’s office before turning his focus to his private practice and criminal defense.
This year’s special election for the DA’s office will cover the remainder of the current term, which expires at the end of 2017. That means whoever wins this year will have to run a reelection campaign in next year’s local election, if they plan to serve another term.