Courts squash Ognibene rebels.
A court decision lifts any lingering doubt to the authority of Queens GOP Chairman Phil Ragusa.
Last October, former. Councilman Tom Ognibene and Bart Haggerty, the Chief of Staff for Councilman Eric Ulrich had filed a petition in NY State Supreme Court to invalidate the Republican County Chairman Certificate, which authorized Phil Ragusa as the legitimate Chairman pursuant to election law.
The case was dismissed on procedural aspects because it was untimely. Simply stated, the case was not filed in time. But that wasn’t enough to squash the party’s infighting.
In response to the lower court’s ruling, Bart Haggerty filed an appeal with the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court that was subsequently struck down on February 7th 2012.
The petitioner failed to comply with the service provisions of the order to show cause dated October 7, 2011, as modified by a Justice of this Court on October 8, 2011, particularly with respect to the time by which service upon the respondents was to be effectuated. Accordingly, since strict compliance with the service provisions of the order to show cause is jurisdictional in nature, the proceeding was properly dismissed as untimely
The higher court affirmed the Judge’s decision, saying in essence, no way Bart, the lower Judge is correct.
The Chairmanship of Phil Ragusa for the Queens County Republican Party has ultimately been vindicated and lifted above suspicion, for now.