Adams Voters to Decide Three Races on 2014 Ballot
ADAMS, Mass. — The town will see several races on this year's election ballot, including for the one selectman's seat.
Incumbent Michael Ouellette will vie for a third three-year term against newcomer Jeffrey Michael Snoonian of 1 Berkshire Square.
Ouellette, of Tramway Drive, was first elected in 2008 and won a narrow victory to retain his seat in 2011.
There will be a three-way race for treasurer/collector between the town's financial assistants Paula Schrade and Town Meeting Member Kelly F. Rice, and Melissa McGovern-Wandrei, currently the appointed treasurer/collector in Clarksburg.
The incumbent, Holly Denault, is retiring in May; the winner of the election will complete the two years left of Denault's term.
Dennis A. Gajda and George J. Haddad will vie for the one three-year seat on the Board of Assessors being vacated by Lynn D. Avery.
Incumbents Joseph F. Greenbush and David M. Strzepek are running for the two three-year library trustee seats; Jill Pompi, appointed to the trustees in December, is running for the two-year seat.
Jacob N. Schutz, an incumbent, and Scott E. Cernik are running for two three-year Park Comission seats.
Incumbents also running for re-election are Moderator Edward Driscoll, one year; Planning Board member Barbara Ziemba, five years; Housing Authority member, Mark Alan Covert, five years; McCann School Committee member Daniel J. Maloney Jr., three years, and Adams-Cheshire Regional School Committee member Regina A. Hill, representing Adams for three years.
No candidates submitted nomination papers for a five-year spot on the Redevelopment Authority or a three-year seat on the Cemetery Commission.
The election will be held Monday, May 5, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the town garage; the deadline to register to vote is April 15 by 8 p.m.
Williamstown Ballot Spaces Filling for Town Election
Sayers Wins Lanesborough Selectman Seat
|Henry 'Hank' Sayers won the special election for the Board of Selectmen on Tuesday.|
|Barbara Hassan outside of Town Hall on election day campaigning for votes.|
Sayers said he was ready to "hit the ground running" when he takes over the seat. Sayers campaigned on trying to lower the tax rate by finding ways to do more with less.
He has strong connections with many town departments and pledged to be fair in resolving issues fairly and quickly.
Two Seeking Lanesborough Selectman Seat
|Selectman candidate Barbara Hassan and Tim O'Brien, who moderated the forum at Town Hall on Wednesday. Candidate Henry Sayers was unable to attend the forum.|
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Two local business owners are vying for the open seat on the Board of Selectmen.
Henry Sayers, owner of Sayers Auto Wrecking, and Barbara Hassan, owner of Barb Hassan Real Estate, are both running in next week's special election.
The seat is open after Robert Barton resigned to run for School Committee. His resignation was too late to fill the seat at the annual election this past spring.
A candidate forum was scheduled on Wednesday but Sayers was unable to attend. However, Hassan fielded questions for a half hour segment while a letter from Sayers was read.
When asked why residents should vote for her, Hassan said one word kept coming to mind — qualified.
Her job as a real estate agent over the past 25 years requires her to be up to date with the issues, Hassan said, and have a wide range of contacts in business and politics.
"I can seamlessly take on the responsibility left by the previous selectman because I've stayed current on the issues facing the town of Lanesborough," Hassan said, adding that she has increased the number of government meetings she has attended so if she is elected, she can hit the ground running.
She has been an active in politics but hasn't run for an elected office before. When the town hired a full-time administrator, she said it created a much more businesslike environment and she is seeking election to continue the transition.
"There has been a huge transition since the new town administrator came on and more transparency and accountability," Hassan said. "I really like that it is a businesslike environment."
She said she has a "business mindset" and the connections that come with it. When asked about improving commercial buildings, she said she has resources across the country she can ask for advice on, for example, a brownfields project.
Hassan said she has a strong relationship with the Berkshire delegation and the mayors of the the two cities — all of whom said they would be available to help in a situation.
"I am humble enough to ask for help all day long on any subject I don't know about," she said.
She said she has met with Mount Greylock Regional Superintendent Rose Ellis about the impending school project and is comfortable that the town and herself will receive plenty of information about that project as it moves along.
Hassan would like to merge various town departments into one, a move she says will create efficiencies. She has already put a year's worth of effort as a member of a committee researching that possibility and she hopes to complete it.
Sayers, in his letter, boasts similar experience in business. His letter focused on trying to control spending while expanding the tax base.
"Young families do not want to move into Lanesborough because of the high tax rate. Some of the committees are looking at current spending habits and ways we could save money. We have to continue to find ways to stretch dollars," the letter reads.
Meanwhile, attention needs to be paid to the town's infrastructure, Sayers' wrote, and that he would place priority on finding grants or bonds to improve the road systems.
"I believe I can work well with other board members and other departments by bringing common sense to issues as well as thinking outside of the box when needed," the letter reads.
The letter continues to say he would like to make town hall "more user friendly" and would work to resolve problems before they grow to become "major issues." He said he would be "fair" and "listen to everyone that has something to say."
The election is on Tuesday, Oct. 15.
Ericson Wins Lanesborough Selectman Race
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Robert Ericson soared to victory in Tuesday's election for the Board of Selectmen.
Ericson reeled in 381 votes compared to former Selectman Joseph Szczpaniak Jr.'s 183 for the seat last held by William Prendergast, who opted not to run for re-election.
However, Szczpaniak may have another chance to seek a seat on the board. Selectman Robert Barton won a seat on the School Committee over Renee Poplaski. Barton won 282 votes to Poplaski's 244. Barton plans to resign from the Board of Selectmen.
In a three-way race for two seats on the Finance Committee, incumbent Al Terranova and newcomer Ronald Tinkham were elected over Stephen Wentworth. Terranova received 284 votes, Tinkham 267 and Wentworth 221. For a one-year seat, incumbent Christine Galib was unopposed and garnered 452 votes.
Incumbent Mary Reilly easily secured her seat with 446 votes to challenger Gregory Wolf's 68 for cemetery trustee. There were also three unopposed races — Christa Sidway for library trustee and Robert Reilly for both moderator and Northern Berkshire Regional Vocational School Committee.
In the statewide race for the U.S. Senate, Lanesborough voters picked Edward Markey over Gabriel Gomez by a margin of 404 to 189. One voter cast his or her vote for Richard Heos of the Twelve Visions Party.