HARVARD — Just shy of four dozen hearty, politically driven Harvard residents ventured out in the rain on Saturday night to attend the annual Town Caucus.
The traditional event called for Elizabeth Stone and Elizabeth Ashe, both by nominations, to take their positions as Caucus Moderator and Secretary, respectively.
And so, things graciously began a few minutes after 7 p.m. in Town Hall.
The annual three-day wait until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 7, to see if anyone turned in signatures in a post-Caucus decision to run for office provided no more luster to what will be an election season focused entirely on the selectman’s race between incumbent William Marinelli and first time candidate for the board, Timothy Clark.
”It is an honor to be nominated for a third term. I look forward to serving again,” commented Selectmen Chairman Marinelli, after he signed his nomination papers.
However, he has not run for a contested slot for the board in six years; his second term in 2003 was uncontested.
Dr. Jeffrey Harris nominated Clark for his first run for the Board of Selectmen. Clark stated his wish to “serve at the pleasure of the people.”
One common thread between these two candidates is that each served on the Planning Board prior to their runs for service as a selectman. Surely, election season should certainly promise a chance to fully comprehend and appraise their commitments to the town of Harvard, as both have served on multiple committees throughout the years.
Marinelli has been a resident since 1994, and Clark since 1998.
By the Feb. 7 deadline at Town Hall, Board of Health member William Spacciapoli had formally declined his nomination at caucus for serving another term.
That fact simply doubles the vacancies on the election slate, as the two-year position on the Warner Free Lecture Society so remains with no takers to serve.
Also, Water Commissioner Duane Barber missed the deadline to sign his nomination papers.
The Housing Authority’s Laurence Finnegan and Planning Board’s Marc Sevigny are both bidding farewell to service in their positions in 2006.
Harvard Housing Authority member Robert Lerner nominated Bruce Nickerson for a five-year term on the Housing Authority.
Associate Planning Board member Kara Minar received a nomination for a three-year position on that Board; incumbent Barbara Brady will remain for the other three-year position.
Appointee to the Community Preservation Committee in 2005, Matthew Ebert, has become an unchallenged incumbent for three more years.
The Warner Free Lecture Society Trustees had appointees from last year accept nominations to serve for three years: Diane Borton and Van Cherington.
The following committee incumbents will serve three-year terms in the offices listed below:
Cemetery Commission, Whit Sprague; Library Trustee, Davida Bagatelle and Catina Hayden Barbieri; Park and Recreation, Eric Peterson and Donald Ashe; School Committee, Willie Wickman and Mark Hardy; Town Clerk, Janet Vellante.
And finally, the wintry perennial rite that Town Caucus repeats every year presents incumbent Christian Bilodeau as Tree Warden.
And, last but not least, David “Doc” Westerling will once again preside at Annual Town Meeting as Town Moderator for another year.