The latest list of people who have pulled papers to run for office in the 2017 Watertown Town Election includes many possible candidates for Town Councilor at Large and School Committee.
If everyone who has pulled papers gets enough signatures to be on the ballot, all the open seats will have at least one person running for them, but two have attracted more interest than the rest.
There will be an uncontested seat in the Councilor-At-Large race, with Susan Falkoff announcing she will not seek reelection. Six people have pulled papers, including the three remaining incumbents: Aaron Dushku, Michael Dattoli and Tony Palmoba. There are also three challengers, all of whom are running for Town Council for the first time: David Stokes, Caroline Bays and Michelle Cokonougher.
For the other Council seats, so far, the only ones to pull papers are the incumbents: Town Council President Mark Sideris, District A Councilor Angeline Kounelis, District B Councilor Lisa Feltner, District C Councilor Vincent Piccirilli and District D Councilor Ken Woodland.
The School Committee race has heated up. There will be two separate races this year, one for the three seats which have four-year terms ending this year, and one to fill the seat of Candace Miller, who will leave the board in August and have two years left on her term.
Two incumbents have pulled papers to run for reelection for the four-year seats – John Portz and Guido Guidotti. The third incumbent, Liz Yusem, has not yet pulled papers.
Three people may challenge for the four-year: former School Committee member Michael Shepard; and the two co-presidents of the Watertown Education Foundation – Elaina Griffith and Amy Donohue.
For the two-year seat, three have pulled papers: Lindsay Mosca, Aviva Manin and Donohue, who will have to decide which seat to run for.
Town Clerk John Flynn said that if three, or more, people run for the two-year School Committee seat a preliminary election will need to be called in September.
The final commmittee on the ballot this November will be the Library Trustees. Three seats are up and so far only one incumbent has pulled papers, Leanne Hammonds. Two others have pulled papers to challenge for the seat: Michael Hanlon and Daniel Pritchard.
To get on the ballot candidates must get 100 signatures of registered Watertown voters, or in the case of District Councilors 100 from those registered to vote in their district. The signatures must be submitted to and certified by the Town Clerk by 5 p.m. on Monday, July 31.
The Town Election will be held Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017. If a Preliminary Election is necessary it will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.