The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, May 15, 2009

All ballot questions pass at Town Election

Shyjan elected Library Trustee

Despite a troubled economy, Carlisle voters reached into their pockets and approved all four funding questions on the ballot on Tuesday, May 12. Proposition 2-1/2 debt exclusions were approved for schematic designs for the Carlisle School building project; for Concord-Carlisle Regional High School facilities improvements; for a purchase of a new DPW roll-off truck; and for fire protection cisterns.

Repayment of the debt exclusions will not affect resident’s tax bills until FY11, according to Town Financial Director Larry Barton. He expects next year’s taxes to rise a little less than 3% as a result of the $22.5 million FY10 operating budget and other spending approved at Town Meeting. Barton said that the amount of increase in taxes will be known more precisely later on, once the three-year property revaluations and new growth calculations have been completed.

Restoration projects for Gleason Library and the Highland Building, passed by Town Meeting on May 4, did not appear on the ballot because they are being financed with Community Preservation Funds and did not require debt exclusion votes.

All elected offices filled

With Nathan Brown’s last minute entry as a write-in candidate for the Planning Board, all openings for elected office were filled. Tom Lane shifted from associate to full membership on the Planning Board, elected by 671 votes.

The contested race for Library Trustee, was won by Larissa Shyjan who received 393 votes, while Jay Luby finished close behind with 342.

Townspeople returned incumbent Doug Stevenson to the Board of Selectmen with 685 votes, where he will be joined by first-term Selectman Peter Scavongelli, who received 613 votes. In uncontested races Wayne Davis received 715 ballots for a one-year term as Town Moderator, and Charlene Hinton was elected to another three-year term as Town Clerk with 722 votes. Ken Mostello joined the Board of Assessors for a three-year term with 675 votes, Chad Koski was reelected to the Carlisle School Committee for a three-year term with 635 votes and James Bohn returned to another five-year term on the Housing Authority with 668 ballots; all were unopposed. Filling two vacancies for three-year terms on the Board of Health were incumbent Michael Holland, with 671 votes and Mark Cadell, who received 648.

Newly elected officials begin their terms as soon as they are certified and sworn in by the Town Clerk, unlike appointed town board and committee members, whose terms usually begin on July 1.

Election day started slowly, but the pace picked up towards the end of the day. By the time the polls were closed at 8 p.m. 854 votes had been cast by 24% of the Carlisle’s 3,512 registered voters. Turn out was up from last year’s 625, but still below 2007 when 1,020 participated in Town Election.

Election Warden Kerri Piette and Deputy Election Warden Rochelle Landon organized the many volunteers who checked in voters, operated the ballot box and later counted votes. Landon was recruited after Election Warden Eva Herndon retired last fall. It was Landon’s first time helping at an election and Hinton said, “She did a splendid job.”

The weather was mild and Hinton commented, “People were in good spirits.” Many brought their children along to learn about the voting process. Hinton provides stickers and candies to distract youngsters who might be disappointed that state law prohibits children from helping to push the ballot into the wooden ballot box. Hinton admitted that she and Assistant Town Clerk Irene Blake provided miniature vases with Lily of the Valley and wild violets in each voting booth. Hinton often cuts flowers from her yard and brings them to work. She said, “I really love fresh flowers and I think they help people think clearly.” ∆




© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito