* Town Moderator

Longterm incumbent George Knittel is a moderate moderator; intelligent, fair, courteous, a bit knit-picky, but that’s the nature of the job.

Challenger Rico Cappucci does not have the qualifications or the experience for the job and has proclaimed a disruptive agenda. His obsessive focus on the method of FinCom member selection, for example, sounds more like bullying than reform.

His call for changing town meeting protocol seems off, too. One wonders if he bothered to check the rules or ever would.

* Selectman

One-term incumbent Andy Deveau can be stubborn and pushy as well as passionate about his causes, but he is smart, dedicated and tenacious.

We think he has learned from his mistakes; the board needs a strong voice and balance.

Challenger and former selectman, Chip Guercio’s “old school politico” time is over. He might be more school-friendly but has hardly been a champion. It’s a moot point now anyway with the newly voted regional system with Ayer.

During Guercio’s tenure as selectman, the tax scofflaw situation was allowed to fester for decades. As a list of back taxes grew, with notable names on it that included Guercio’s, the selectmen would not allow the tax collector and treasurer to take necessary steps to collect the much needed back taxes.

Plus, there is a credible accusation out there that Chip does not live in Shirley any more, unless you call the Bull Run kitchen home.

There are also existing questions about his service on the sewer commission, where he remains a commissioner.

Would the Bull Run have been on the line for sewer service if its owner was not on the commission? Doubtful.