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Nashua moves forward on performing arts center

Union Leader Correspondent

November 07. 2017 10:59PM
Nashua voters recommended approving a $15.5 million bond issue to convert the old Alec's Shoes building on Main Street into a performing arts venue. (Kimberly Houghton/Union Leader Correspondent file)

NASHUA — A slim margin of Gate City voters encouraged officials to move forward with a $15.5 million arts center in a non-binding referendum question Tuesday.

With a vote of 5,163 to 5,016, residents showed up at the polls to voice their opinion on the proposal to convert the former Alec’s Shoes store into a downtown performing arts center.

The results of the vote will not require aldermen to approve the $15.5 million bond, but rather provide them guidance on how much support there is in the community for the proposed arts venue.

The demographics within the aldermanic horseshoe will be vastly different in January, as eight new aldermen were elected on Tuesday.

Among the six candidates seeking three spots as at-large aldermen, David Tencza (5,364), Shoshanna Kelly (4,994) and Brandon Laws (4,189) secured the highest number of votes. Opponents Mark Cookson garnered 3,332 votes, Dan Moriarty obtained 3,959 and former mayoral candidate Chris Williams gathered 4,135 votes.

In Ward 1, State Rep. Jan Schmidt ousted incumbent Sean McGuinness 938-706.

In Ward 2, incumbent Richard Dowd keeps his seat running opposed with 847 votes.

In Ward 3, David Schoneman (623) lost his seat to State Rep. Patricia Klee (749).

In Ward 4, incumbent Tom Lopez (333) secured his position against former alderman Arthur Craffey (171).

In Ward 5, newcomer Ernest Jette (897) ousted State Rep. Don LeBrun (455).

In Ward 6, Ken Gidge (429) beat out Efsthathia Booras (376).

In Ward 7, Alderman June Caron ran unopposed and will keep her position with 738 votes.

In Ward 8, incumbent Mary Ann Melizzi-Golja (802) will keep her post; she ran against David MacLaughlin who garnered 342 votes.

In Ward 9, Linda Harriott-Gathright (504) took home the win against opponents Kevin Flynn (406) and Iang Jeon (347).

Nashua voters also supported Keno 5,617 to 4,557.

For the Board of Education, Dotty Oden, Heather Raymond, Gloria Timmons and Raymond Guarino won the four seats.

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