School repairs, new town clerk follow Londonderry voting
LONDONDERRY - Extensive repairs to several Londonderry schools could begin as soon as the spring thaw after the approval of a $4 million bond for facility improvements.The item passed with 1,235 votes at the Londonderry polls Tuesday, though 736 voted against it.A similar item failed at 2013 town meeting. The newly approved, 10-year bond is about a half-million dollars less than the one that previously failed, according to facilities director Chuck Zappala.Business administrator Peter Curro said the roof at Londonderry Middle School presents one of the most immediate needs.About $735,000 of the bond monies are slated to replace that roof, which will need some attention pretty soon.Other bond monies will go toward repaving of the Matthew Thornton Elementary School parking lot ($600,000), roof repairs at Londonderry High School ($1,060,000), paving the middle school parking lot ($250,000), a roof replacement at Moose Hill School ($410,000), repaving the middle school parking lot ($350,000), renovations to the high school's cafeteria and kitchen ($100,000), paving segments of the parking area at Moose Hill School ($70,000), district-wide field improvements ($350,000) and district-wide security upgrades ($200,000).Poll turnout was slow, yet steady, town moderator Cindi Rice Conley said, though at the end of the day on Tuesday just over 2,000 of the town's nearly 16,000 registered voters had paid the polls a visit.After Tuesday's vote, Londonderry will have a new face in the town clerk's office.The town has been without a town clerk/tax collector since the departure of longtime employee Meg Seymour last year.In the interim, Seymour's duties have fallen on deputy town clerk/tax collector Kathleen Donnelly and her three clerk assistants.Sherry Farrell won the race for town clerk/tax collector with 740 votes, ahead of challengers Adriana Komst (595) and Deborah Nowicki (373 votes).“She's always ready to help anyone who crosses her path,” fellow resident Donna Andronico said. “Sherry will make a terrific public servant.”Farrell is already on familiar terms with those around town, being a steady presence at community events in her work with the Londonderry Commerce and Visitors Center. Her husband, John, serves on the Town Council.Since Tuesday's voters overwhelmingly passed warrant article 2, a citizen's petition asking the town to separate town clerk and tax duties; however, changes are on the horizon to both positions.Voters approved the separation with 1,432 votes, with 431 opposed. As the result, a part-time town clerk will be elected at the 2015 town meeting and a full-time tax collector will be appointed by the Town Council at the same time.Though Farrell was elected to a two-year term, the passage of Article 2 means she'll serve as town clerk/tax collector for the first year of her term, but the following year she'll serve solely as town clerk.