Races for school, selectmen, but most Westport posts unopposed
Filing deadline came and went Tuesday afternoon leaving Westport voters with the prospect of lots of unopposed "races" but competition for two key town boards in the April elections.
Three candidates have filed for two available three-year seats on the Board of Selectmen. In the running are incumbents Antone C. Vieira Jr. (chairman), and Steven J. Ouellete. Also filing was Richard M. Tongue of 2048 Main Road, who has served previously on the board.
Incumbent School Committee member Michael P. Sullivan faces two challengers for the one available three-year seat. Joining him on the ballot are Nancy Rioux, 17 President Street, and Christopher Parker, 33 Katlyne Court.
There are three candidates for two three-year constable posts. Incumbents Joseph Migliori and William A. Pariseau will be challenged by Arthur G. Caesar, 812 Sanford Road.
Nobody showed interest in two positions. A four-year seat on the Planning Board has no candidate, nor has a three-year Landing Commission seat. Former Highway Surveyor Jack Sisson resigned from the Landing Commission late last year.
Candidates for other seats can relax this elections season — they have not competition. They are:
• Board of Assessors, one three-year term: John J. McDermott, incumbent
• Board Of Commissioners Of Trust Funds, one three-year term: Maxwell Turner, incumbent
• Board of Health, one three-year term: Karl Santos, incumbent
• Fish Commissioners, one three-year term: George A. Yeomans, incumbent
• Housing Authority, one five-year term: Ronald E. Costa, incumbent
• Trustees, Free Public Library, two three-year terms: Pauline B. Dooley, incumbent; James J. Walsh Jr., 157 Blossom Road
• Planning Board, one five-year term: William D. Raus, incumbent
• Regional School Committee, one three-year term: Paul Jennings, incumbent; Jack Baughan, 509 River Road
• Tax Collector, one three-year term: Carol A. Borden, incumbent
• Town Clerk, one three-year term: Marlene M. Samson, incumbent
• Treasurer, one five-year term: George E. Foster, incumbent. This could be the final election for this post as voters will be asked whether they wish to convert this elected position to an appointed job, as has already happened with the town highway surveyor job. Mr. Foster, who has been Westport's treasurer for the past quarter century, usually running unopposed, has announced that he won't seek another term after this one.
He has had mixed feelings about the change to appointed, Mr. Foster said in January, "but I think I agree with the Selectmen that the time has come.
"The job has become pretty technical, not something the average person off the street can handle," and there needs to be a mechanism for making sure that candidates are qualified, he said.