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Four Will Vie For Cheshire Selectmen Seats

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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CHESHIRE, Mass. — Four candidates will vie for the two open positions on the Board of Selectmen.
There will be at least two new faces will be on the board come May as Donna DeFino, Mark Biagini, Jason Levesque, and E. Richard Scholz will run for the soon to be vacated seats.
Longtime Selectwoman Carol Francesconi will not run for re-election and a second spot is open because current Town Administrator Edmund St. John IV had vacated his seat to apply for the position last summer.
DeFino is the current chairman of the Planning Board.
Biagini ran against Selectman Robert Ciskowski last year but lost by 106 votes.
Scholz has also run in the past: The first time was in 2014 when he was defeated by former Selectman Paul Astorino and two years later he was defeated by Francesconi by 25 votes.
He also ran in 2017 but was defeated by St. John by 268 votes.
Also on the ballot this May will be the question to increase the board from three to five members. 
This process goes back to a citizens' petition in 2015 and, after a series of town meetings and ballot votes, the town must now vote to accept special legislation.
There will be a race for the Board of Health as Michael "Mickey" Biagini Jr. will defend his seat against Christopher "CJ" Garner.
There will also be a race for Cemetery Commission with Julie Ciskowski, Richard Francesconi, and Stephen LaFogg running for two open seats.
The only other race will be for the three town constables between incumbents Christopher "CJ" Garner, Alison Warner and Robert Copeland and newcomer Jason Hoellerich.
There is an open seat on the Adams-Cheshire Regional School committee for a Cheshire representative but no one has returned papers including current seat holder Peter Tatro.
William Craig will run unopposed as Cheshire representative on the McCann School Committee (Northern Berkshire Vocational School District). He is the incumbent. 
DeFino will also run for the moderator position unopposed as that post was also vacated by St. John.
Nancy Delorey will run unopposed for assessor. Delorey was appointed last year to finish out a term. 
Ronald DeAngelis will run unopposed for the Water Commission and Peter Traub, the incumbent, will run unopposed for Planning Board. 
The election is Monday, May 6.
Wednesday, April 3, is the last day to withdraw nomination papers and April 17 is the last day to register to vote. 

Tags: election 2019,   town elections,   

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Cheshire Town Meeting Approves $6.6M Budget, Rejects Pot Bylaws

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff

Carol Francesconi takes the gavel as moderator for the meeting. 
CHESHIRE, Mass. — Town meeting on Tuesday night rejected four citizens' petitions that would have greatly limited marijiuna facilities.
Voters did approve amended versions of the 16 other articles on the annual town meeting warrant during a nearly three-hour session held in the Hoosac Valley High School gym. 
That included a revised fiscal 2021 budget of $6,640,131.64, authorizations for purchasing a number of vehicles and the redirection of $60,000 approved last year but unused toward a design work for turning Cheshire School into a municipal complex.  
The marijuana bylaws would have required any growing facility to file a water usage report annually to the town; allowed only one non-retail cannabis facility in town; broadened the definition of "facility" to include accessories such as fences, plants and related items; set up a 24-hour odor control; and asked the Planning Board to revisit its approved bylaw. 
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