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North Adams Has 2 Candidates for Mayor, 15 for City Council
Staff Reports,
06:03PM / Friday, July 19, 2019
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The deadline for nomination papers for the city election passed at 5 p.m. on Friday and so  did any chance for a preliminary election. 
 
Instead, voters will decide between two candidates for mayor — incumbent Thomas Bernard and McCann School Committee member Rachel Branch — and 15 candidates for nine at-large seats on the City Council. 
 
"There will be no preliminary election," said City Clerk Deborah Pedercini. "That will save the city some money."
 
There would have be three candidates for mayor and 19 for council to trigger a preliminary. However, Richard David Greene never returned papers for mayor and four potential council candidates failed to return papers as well.  
 
All the candidates' nomination signatures have been verified.
 
Bernard is running for his second term in office after replacing outgoing Mayor Richard Alcombright two years ago. Branch also ran in that election but was eliminated in a five-way preliminary that saw Bernard advance with Robert J. Moulton Jr., who this time around is trying for a double by running for City Council and School Committee.
 
The City Council will see a change in at least three seats with current Councilors Eric Buddington, Rebbecca Cohen and Joshua Moran declining to run again.
 
Running for re-election will be Keith Bona, Marie T. Harpin, Paul Hopkins, Jason Laforest, Benjamin Lamb and Wayne Wilkinson.  
 
Two of the most experienced "newcomers" this round are Moulton and Lisa Blackmer, who are seeking a return to the council
 
Blackmer served on the council for a decade, including as president, before unsuccessfully running for state representative in 2017. 
 
Moulton served several terms before losing his council seat in the 2009 but was re-elected for another term in 2015. He ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 2013 and 2017.
 
Also in the running are Ronald K. Sheldon, Bryan K. Sapienza, Cameron Lapine, Roger J. Eurbin, Robert Cardimino, Peter J. Oleskiewicz, and Jessica Sweeney.
 
Sapienza and Cardimino previously ran for council. The others are largely newcomers to city politics, although Oleskiewicz had tried for mayor and Eurbin a last-minute council run in the past.
 
Five candidates will vie for three seats on the School Committee. Incumbents Karen Bond and Tara Jacobs are running for second and third terms, respectively. In addition to Moulton, they are being challenged by David Sookey III and Emily Daunis. Incumbent Nicholas Fahey is not running for re-election.
 
There will also be a race for the McCann School Committee, the first in some time. Incumbents George Canales and William R. Diamond will face challengers Peter E. Breen and Shannon M. Santelli for the two seats up for election representing North Adams. 
 
Pedercini will be overseeing her first election since being appointed city clerk earlier this year. 
 
"I'm hoping for a good election, we have a nice field of candidates," she said, and noted that with Assistant City Clerk Catherine Verrier, "I've got a good partner here."
 
Update: Cameron Lapine has withdrawn from the council race because of a new job outside the state and his name will not be on the ballot. 
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