60-plus candidates face off in Waterford

Waterford — While some key players in Town Hall automatically will remain in their posts after running unopposed on Election Day, more than 60 candidates are set to face off in races for Representative Town Meeting, the town's 24-member legislative body, and other town boards.

The executive seat will change no matter what, as Dan Steward, first selectman for the last dozen years, will retire at the end of his term this year and either Republican Rob Brule or Democrat Beth Sabilia will take over.

But Town Clerk Dave Campo and Tax Collector Alan Wilensky, both Republicans, will run unopposed, as will Republican candidate for town treasurer, Abbas Danesh. Jason Maryeski, endorsed by the Democratic and Green parties, will run unopposed for Zoning Board of Appeals alternate. Voters must pick between Republican Marilyn Lusher and Democrat Marianna McGuirk for a spot on the Board of Assessment Appeals.

Fourteen members of the RTM — eight Republicans, five Democrats and one Green Party member — are seeking re-election, while 21 newcomers have entered the fray. Campo said in an interview that the legislative body increased from its usual 22 members to 24, based on an increase in total electors in Districts 2 and 3.

Voters can select any five candidates for RTM District 1, including incumbents Republican Tim Condon and Green Party member Samuel Urban, and Democrats Nick Gauthier, Chris Bachant, Frank Mangual and Liz Garcia Gonzalez and Republicans Valerie Muckle Metivier, Danielle Steward-Gelinas and Robert Swansen.

Eight candidates are running for six spots in RTM District 2, including five incumbents: Baird Welch-Collins, Greg Attanasio and Ted Olynciw, all Democrats, and Republicans April Cairns and Tali Maidelis. The three new faces are Democrat Margaret Welch and Republicans Michael Hannan and Liam O'Leary.

Ten candidates are in the hunt for seven seats in RTM District 3, including three incumbents, Republicans Paul Goldstein and Richard Muckle and Democrat Michael Stankov. Other candidates include Democrats Kathy Kohl, Tim Fioravanti, Sarbani Hazra and Emmeline Franklin, and Republicans David Lersch, Jennifer Antonino Bracciale and Richard Morgan.

Four incumbents — Democrat Susan Driscoll and Republicans Michael Rocchetti, Francisco Ribas and Thomas Dembek — are up for reelection in RTM District 4. Also running for one of six seats in the district are Democrats Sally Ritchie, Steve Elci and Laurie Wolfley and Republican Mike Bono.

Eight candidates are facing off for five open Board of Education seats. Incumbents Marcia Benveruti and Miriam Furey-Wagner are joined on the Democratic ticket by Christine Hammond, while Republicans Craig Merriman and Amanda Gates-Lamothe seek reelection and are joined on the ticket by Pat Fedor and Michele Devine.

For the Board of Finance, Republicans Kevin Petchark, Kevin Reardon and Jim Reid will face Democrats Joe Filippetti, Kate Fioravanti, Jerry Fischer and J.W. "Bill" Sheehan. Filippetti and Sheehan are incumbents. Voters must pick any four candidates.

Sample ballots and absentee ballots are available on the town website. Anyone with questions can contact Campo at (860) 444-5831.

Editor's Note: This version corrects the fact that J.W. "Bill" Sheehan is running for reelection, and Republican Kevin Petchark is running for a seat on the Board of Finance.

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