New faces in '13 as some officials step down
BRATTLEBORO -- Some of Brattleboro's longest serving elected officials will be stepping down this year as the deadline nears for candidates to get their names on the 2013 Town Meeting Day ballot.
Tim O'Connor, who has been moderator for Brattleboro's town meetings, will not run for re-election in March.
Selectboard Chairman Dick DeGray has also announced that he will not seek another term on the board after serving for seven years.
And Dora Bouboulis, who was first elected to the Selectboard in 2007, said she will not have her name on the ballot when voters go to the polls on March 5.
O'Connor had to miss Representative Town Meeting last year due to health concerns and he said he has been weighing his options. He said he recently decided that he will not seek a 23rd term as Brattleboro's moderator.
"I'm not sure if I am any wiser, but I am older," he said during a recent telephone interview. "I think it's time for the town to get a different perspective. It will be nice to be able to sit on the sidelines and watch."
Potential candidates have until 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 28, to file a petition with at least 30 signatures with the town clerk.
The elections will be held on Tuesday, March 5.
Brattleboro's Annual Representative Town Meeting will be held on Saturday, March 23.
Along with O'Connor's one year moderator seat, there will be three open seats on the Selectboard this year.
And with DeGray and Bouboulis both announcing that they will not run, the Selectboard is sure to get some new faces in 2013. The three-year seat that Bouboulis had is open and there are two, one-year seats also up for grabs this year.
DeGray said last year that he was not going to run but he decided to get his name on to the ballot for one final time to help finish up the wastewater project and also to try to get the police-fire stations project approved.
With the wastewater project expected to be completed this year, and the police-fire renovations slated to start in the spring, DeGray said he is ready to step down from serving on the Selectboard.
Voters will also elect two one-year seats and a three-year seat on the town school board and a three-year seat on the Brattleboro Union High School board.
There will also be elections for first and second constable, a lister and a three-year seat on the Trustees of Public Funds.
Town meeting representatives in all three districts will also be chosen by the voters on March 5.
Chris Chapman's one year seat on the Selectboard is also up for grabs this year.
When reached this weekend Chapman said he is keeping his cards close to the vest, though said he will announce soon his intentions for the coming year.
For Bouboulis it has been an on-again, off-again relationship with the board since first being elected five years ago.
Bouboulis won a one-year seat on the board in 2007 and then lost the next year. She was appointed to the board after former board member Richard Garant resigned in November 2009 and then she won a three-year seat again in 2010.
Bouboulis says she will remain active in town politics and hopes to continue representing Brattleboro on the boards for the Windham Regional Commission and the Windham Solid Waste Management District.
"Five years is a good amount of time," she said. "I've got other projects I will keep working on. I will still continue to stay involved in local politics as a citizen activist."
Howard Weiss-Tisman can be reached at 802-254-2311, ext. 279, or email@example.com. You can follow him on Twitter @HowardReformer.