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Judge bumps McKees Rocks Republican off ballot in Allegheny County Council primary

Theresa Clift
| Monday, March 27, 2017, 4:33 p.m.
Pat Catena is sworn in to Allegheny County Council Tuesday, January 17. He will serve in the District 4 seat vacated by Michael Finnerty until November.
Theresa Clift | Tribune - Review
Pat Catena is sworn in to Allegheny County Council Tuesday, January 17. He will serve in the District 4 seat vacated by Michael Finnerty until November.

A McKees Rocks Republican seeking a seat on Allegheny County Council will be kept off the ballot because he broke rules in gathering signatures, an Allegheny County judge ruled.

Dimitrios Pantzoulas filed papers hoping to win the GOP primary and run against Pat Catena, D-Carnegie, in the general election. Council members appointed Catena in January to replace former Councilman Michael Finnerty, who stepped down, in District 4.

A woman circulating petitions for Pantzoulas was not a qualified elector, Allegheny County Common Pleas Senior Judge Joseph M. James ruled last week.

Pantzoulas has an option to appeal the decision, but he had not done so as of Monday afternoon, said Kathy Lederman, James' law clerk.

District 4 covers Carnegie, McKees Rocks, Scott, South Fayette, Robinson and other municipalities.

There are no other candidates vying for Catena's seat.

The only contested council primary race is in District 12, where Banksville Democrat Robert Palmosina is challenging incumbent Jim Ellenbogen, D-Banksville.

Councilmen Ed Kress, R-Shaler, and Charles Martoni, D-Swissvale, will face challengers in the general election Nov. 7.

The deadline to file to run as an independent is Aug. 1.

Theresa Clift is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 412-380-5669 or

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