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With candidates on the Saugus ballot ranging from a Board of Selectmen member who wants a new fire station to a self-described “patriotic conservative” serving on the School Committee, town voters have a broad selection of candidates to choose from on Nov. 2.
For the School Committee, 2021 could be summed up as the year members are balancing timetable and tenor.
Superintendent of Schools Erin McMahon mapped out an ambitious plan to make Saugus students top scorers on the state comprehensive assessment tests by 2027. First-term committee members Thomas Whittredge, Ryan Fisher and Dennis Gould, with support from committee veteran John Hatch ― who returned to the committee two years ago ― are analyzing the plan.
They are also trying to work with colleague Arthur Grabowski, who has been censured for his confrontations with fellow committee members. Grabowski insists his “patriotic-conservative” stance translates into being a voice for parents irrespective of his colleagues’ disagreements with him.
Former committee member Vincent Serino hopes voters will return him to the committee to work on improving communication between members and school administrators. Leigh Gerow is seeking a committee seat because she thinks more parents need to be on the committee at a time when the town’s elementary schools have undergone significant reorganization.
Selectmen Chairman Anthony Cogliano and colleague Corinne Riley support a town plan to build a West Saugus fire station, while member Jeff Cicolini said he is on guard against any City of Boston efforts to move drug addicts from the Boston tent encampment, commonly referred to as Mass and Cass, to Saugus motels.
Board members Debra Panetta and Michael Serino want voters to know development is a key concern they are focused on managing. Candidates for selectmen Darren McCullough and Domenic Montano are concerned about how the town can best serve residents as efforts to control the COVID-19 pandemic advance.
Former School Committee member Elizabeth Marchese’s campaign for a board seat is focused on learning why Saugus is losing so many families to other schools and towns.
Environmental concerns top board candidates Leo Fonseca Jr. and Harold Young’s priority list, with Young calling for the town to purchase more electric vehicles and make more car-charging stations available throughout the town.
Remember to vote, Saugonians.