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Boucher Reacts to Primary Results, Begins General Campaign
Boucher Campaign On: 08:39AM / Friday September 30, 2011
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Mayoral candidate Ron Boucher would like to extend a round of thanks to all his supporters for his better than expected showing in the mayoral primary election Tuesday evening.

"My campaign staff has worked tremendously hard these last two weeks, and this was more than we had hoped for and clearly shows how our support is growing each and every day," said Boucher, currently City Council president. "Considering my campaign was only formally announced two weeks ago, my staff assembled six weeks ago, and considering I was outspent 10 to one, I am optimistic for the future, but want to ask all my supporters to continue to work as hard as ever in order to build on this momentum, in order to carry us to victory in November."

Boucher added, "Now that the race has been narrowed down to myself and my opponent, my detailed position on issues will be made public in a series of press releases starting next week. I look forward to one-on-one debates with my opponent and am confident that once the public learns the details of my positions and ideas, I will emerge as the victor on Nov. 8. Finally, I would like to congratulate Mr. Martelle on a great preliminary effort."

The campaign to elect Ron Boucher Mayor of North Adams would like to invite everyone to come watch Ron march in the Fall Foliage parade on Oct. 2, and also to extend an invitation to the Spaghetti Supper Fundraiser at the American Legion on Oct. 13. You can learn more about Ron Boucher and his campaign by visiting www.VoteBoucher2011.com. Inquiries can be mailed to VoteBoucher2011@yahoo.com.



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Malumphy Calls for Term Limits, Redistricting Reform
Malumphy Campaign On: 08:30PM / Thursday September 29, 2011
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Independent candidate Pam Malumphy on Wednesday announced her position on two key election reform issues affecting the 3rd Berkshire District as well as the entire Commonwealth:

1) Support for the creation of an independent commission to oversee future state legislative and congressional districts in Massachusetts.

2) Support for term limits on state representatives and state senators.

Malumphy stated, "As I have gone door-to-door across the city of Pittsfield, voters have told me that they feel disconnected from their government and that they lack public confidence in state government. As state representative I will support and propose legislation that reforms state government and makes it more accountable to the people of Massachusetts including the 3rd Berkshire District."

Malumphy called for legislation that would create an independent commission to focus on redistricting efforts rather than leaving it up to the legislature. 

"The Legislature should not be the body responsible for creating voting districts…it becomes too political, a recent speaker of the House resigned and plead guilty to obstruction of justice because of his involvement in the redistricting process. To reduce this political influence many states such as Iowa, Minnesota, California and Ohio and others have instituted redistricting reforms such as independent commissions to do this important work."

Malumphy also issued her support for term limits of 12 years, which is six terms for both members of the House of Representatives and state Senate. 

"I believe by placing these limits, we get more people to seek public office, we will get more contested races and we increase public trust in the state legislature."

With the last two Democratic state representatives vacating their seats, forcing expensive special elections, Malumphy said she is "determined to demonstrate that partisan politics and back room deals are not acceptable in Pittsfield or on Beacon Hill." 

One of the legislative committee assignments Malumphy plans to ask for, if elected, are seats on the House Committee on Ethics or the Joint Committee on Elections Laws. She would also like a seat on the Joint Committee on Community Development and Small Business as well as the Joint Committee on Education.


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Barrett Reels In 45 Write-In Votes For Mayor
By Andy McKeever On: 10:48PM / Wednesday September 28, 2011
Updated results on Sept. 28: Two ballots that were initially counted as blank — one in Ward 1 and one in Ward 2 — were actually write-in votes for John Barrett III.

Preliminary Election Results

Ward 1
Ward 2
Ward 3
Ward 4
Ward 5
Total
Richard Alcombright
204
228
157
291
225
1,105
Ronald Boucher
129
162
100
214
146
751
Robert Martelle
31
63
32
52
38
216
Write-in: John Barrett III
10
7
12
10
6
45
Write-in: Other
0
0 2 3 1 6
Blanks
232
252
179
322
219
1,204
Total ballots cast
303
356
241
446
318
1,664

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city's longtime former mayor still has supporters who would like to see him reseated in the corner office.

In Tuesday's preliminary election John Barrett III received 45 write-in votes. Six others received write-in votes but because the totals were fewer than five votes, the names will not be recorded.

The official totals put Richard Alcombright with 1,105 votes and Ronald Boucher with 741 to place them on the mayoral ballot in November. Robert Martelle finished with 216 votes.

However, the ballots had voters have been puzzled. Rather than voting for one person, the ballots asked for voters to vote for "no more than two" candidates, which created 1,204 blank votes. If someone voted for one person, their other vote was considered "blank."

City Clerk Marilyn Gomeau said the voting machines were set and the ballots were written that way because the election sought two candidates. But a number of residents claimed preliminary elections in the past have always asked voters to choose only one.

According to Brian McNiff, a spokesman from Secretary of State William Galvin's office, the city charter would indicate how many candidates to vote for on the preliminary ballot.

Former City Clerk Mary Ann Abuisi, who was clerk during the last preliminary 14 years ago, said preliminary elections have been rare but does not remember ever having voters choose multiple candidates.

In Pittsfield, voters in the preliminary election on Tuesday only picked one candidate. In any case, more than two-thirds voters chose not to select two candidates.

Boucher and Alcombright both submitted their campaign finance reports, detailing receipts and expenditures up to eight days before the election.

As of Sept. 19, Boucher received a total of $1,669 in contributions and spent $666.27. He also received $1,410 worth of in-kind contributions. Alcombright received $7,466 in contributions and spent $5,910.

The full reports are available below.

2011 Finance Report Ron Boucher

2011 Finance Report Richard Alcombright

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Bianchi, Marchetti Earn November Ballot Spot
By Joe Durwin On: 10:17PM / Tuesday September 27, 2011
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Voters will select between Daniel Bianchi and Peter Marchetti for mayor come November.

Bianchi, who narrowly lost the 2009 election by some 200 votes to incumbent Mayor James Ruberto, came out on top with 3,430 votes, or 49 percent of those cast in the city's seven wards.

Next in line was Marchetti, a four-term city councilor, with 2,759, or 39.4 percent.

Mood at the Bianchi celebration at Mazzeo's Ristorante was pleased and unsurprised by his nearly 700-vote lead.

The candidate joked that "I'm still not sure if my daughter voted for Steve Fillio" and said third-place candidate Joseph Nichols had pledged to support him.

Nichols and Melissa Mazzeo, both whom are often in the voting minority together, were both in attendance.

Bianchi and Marchetti were the front-runners going into the five-way race, although some thought that Nichols, a local businessman finishing up his first term on the council, might cut into their leads. Nichols ended with 691 votes, barely 10 percent.

Marchetti, with supporters at the Itam Club where he launched his campaign a few months back, said he's ready to start the real race. Supporters seemed surprised at his second-place showing but committed to the campaign, including Ruberto, City Councilor Peter White and state representative candidate Tricia Farley-Bouvier.

"I'm happy to be a winner tonight, and we'll continue to fight until November 8," said Marchetti.

Trailing far behind were past mayoral candidates Stephen Fillio with 77 votes (1 percent) and Donna Walto with 44 (.6).

Unlike in North Adams, voters selected only one candidate.

Ward 4 voters had their own preliminary election to select two candidates who will try to replace outgoing Councilor Michael Ward.

They picked last election's challenger to Ward, Christopher Connell, with 610 votes and former ward representative Ozias "Chuck" Vincelette with 523. Left out was newcomer James Brosnan with 346 votes.


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Alcombright, Boucher Take Top Preliminary Spots
By Tammy Daniels On: 07:31PM / Tuesday September 27, 2011

Campaign supporters were out at St. Elizabeth's Parish Center, where four of the city's wards vote.


Toting up the results of Tuesday's preliminary election.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Voters have selected the two candidates — Richard Alcombright and Ronald Boucher — who will face off for mayor in the general election in November.

Incumbent Alcombright outpolled both his challengers in the balloting that saw about 18 percent of the city's 9,000-odd voters go to the polls.

"I was very pleased. If you look at the numbers, the percentages almost to follow kind of what they did in the last election back in '09," said Alcombright. "I think we were upwards of 60 percent."

The incumbent said this was just a battle and his campaign will "run a strong, hard campaign for the rest of the time." 

"We have to work hard," he said, pledging to "stay focused on our message and stay positive." "Ron's a good candidate and the next few weeks will be telling as we dig into the issues and see really where our differences lie."

Boucher wasn't too far behind the incumbent. Both handily outstripped third place Robert Martelle, whose campaign barely registered.

"I'm very excited," said Boucher. "I thought the turnout for us at 751[votes] was excellent considering less than two weeks ago, we just had our kickoff and our campaign has only been together, working at it for only six weeks.

"The mayor probably outspent us three to one in advertising," he said. "All I can say is I look forward to the opportunity to debate the mayor in the coming weeks. We will talk about the issues that are important to the city ... the vision and the ideas going forth."

Boucher noted the large number of voters who failed to turnout. "I believe this is going to be a horse race to the end ... there's a lot of people sitting out there waiting for what we have to say."

In total, Alcombright received 1,105 votes; Boucher, the current City Council president, earned 751, and Martelle 216.

Ken O'Brien, head warden at St. Elizabeth's Parish Center, described the turnout as "medium" and said it "was steady and slow all day."

"It went as smooth as can be," he said.

The voting wasn't straightforward, however, because voters were asked to pick "not more than two" candidates. That means some people voted two candidates, but many more apparently voted for one if the high number of blanks is any indication.

A blank vote occurred if only one vote — or no votes — was cast on the ballot. So one ballot could have an actual vote and a blank vote. There were 1,206 blank votes on the 1,664 ballots cast, indicating that voters may not have understand they could vote for two candidates or didn't care to vote for two.

Each of the five wards showed a similar trend with about two-thirds of voters selecting only one name. Some supporters may have tried to outwit each other by selecting their candidate and throwing a vote to Martelle; others likely picked the two front-runners.

But it's obvious many more voters didn't even bother to come out, figuring they'd wait to cast their ballots for real come November.

Preliminary Election Results

Ward 1
Ward 2
Ward 3
Ward 4
Ward 5
Total
Richard Alcombright
204
228
157
291
225
1,105
Ronald Boucher
129
162
100
214
146
751
Robert Martelle
31
63
32
52
38
216
Write-ins
9
6
14
13
8
50
Blanks
233
253
179
322
219
1,206
Total ballots cast
303
356
241
446
318
1,664

Update: Rewrite throughout; quotes added at 10:48 p.m. Tuesday. 



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