Many decisions for Candia voters
Candia voters will be presented with a packed ballot this election, with 34 warrants up for a vote, though many of the more controversial warrants which were set to appear for a vote town were largely nullified by the Feb. 2 deliberative session.
A $100,000 article to close the town’s former incinerator site was reduced to $1. Petitioned warrant articles to abolish the Conservation Commission and to set determined hours for the town clerk’s office were amended to read largely in reverse of their original intention.
Some of these votes may still retain significant as referendums, however.
“I don’t know that I would agree that they’re completely meaningless,” said Candia Town Moderator Clark Thyng. “For instance, with the Conservation Commission, (by law) that warrant still needs to refer to the Conservation Commission. It simply turns it into a referendum of approval, which I think the Conservation Commission will look at carefully and say ‘Boy, if we don’t have a high approval rating, we need to think about what we’re doing.’”
Thirteen of the remaining warrant articles are smaller contributions to various organizations like the Red Cross, but a few big-ticket items, like the $163,500 plan to renovate the old town library, a $190,000 Currier Road project and a $100,000 article to close the town’s incinerator site, are found throughout the ballot. The proposed operating budget is $2,339,546, with a default budget of $2,336,263.
On the school side, the district’s proposed operating budget is $8,042,055, with a default of $2,336,263. Two collective bargaining agreements will also appear on the ballot. Controversially, a petitioned warrant article to restrict kindergarten to half-day sessions was amended at the deliberative session to include language noting that it was “advisory” and “non-binding,” though the School Board and its legal counsel have argued that the warrant would only be advisory without that language, as the decision was within their jurisdiction.
There is a four-way race for two seats on the Board of Selectmen between Current selectmen Chairman Joe Duarte, incumbent member Amanda Soares, newcomer Mark Pepper and former Selectman Carleton Robie.
Other contested races include trustee of trust funds between Thomas Giffen and Albert Hall III, and superintendent of cemeteries between Garrick Asselin and Jerome Becker.