(UPDATED) Question 1 Defeated; Selectmen Wilson and Gay Re-Elected

Brothers unseats Fernald for seat on the Board of Health

The votes have been counted and the people have spoken ... loudly.

Question 1, which asked voters at Saturday's Municipal election to approve a $1.9 million debt exclusion to pay for expanded athletic complex proposal was soundly defeated by a 2-1 margin.

The final vote total was 2914-1465 and the question was defeated in each of the town's eight precincts.

Meanwhile, Selectmen Scott Wilson and David Gay easily won re-election, defeating challengers Bob Marcin and Ken Miano.

Wilson, who has been an outspoken supporter of Question 1 and the field proposal, admitted to having mixed feelings Saturday night.

"I'm disappointed, I'm not going to lie," said Wilson. To be honest I would have rather lost and have the field question pass. I really feel that field is something that can bring people together. The high school is the first part but that field is another part of it."

In one of the more contentious races, former Tewksbury School Committee Chairman Mike Kelley defeated 28-year incumbent Peter Downing for a seat on the Shawsheen Tech School Committee, 2,346-1,536.

Challenger Kathleen Brothers, making her second bid for the Board of Health, was successful. Brothers (2,368) and incumbent Ed Sheehan (2,243) were the top vote-getters with two seats up for grabs. Incumbent Mary-Ellen Fernald (1,993) finished third.

"I'm thrilled," said Brothers. "But I'll admit I'm a little bit melancholy. Mary Ellen is a friend of mine."

Fernald was disappointed in the results but gracious in defeat.

"Kathy and I have been acquainted for a long time and I am very happy for her," she said. "I know she will do a great job.  She puts her whole self into whatever she is involved in at the time.  Congrats to her."

Incumbent Nancy Reed had no problem retaining her seat on the Planning Board, defeating challenger Ed Sullivan, 2,548-1,455, to earn a new term.

Sullivan said the results sent a message.

"It seems like the voters went toward the incumbents," he said. "i guess that means people are happy with the way things are."

Sullivan, who ran unsuccessfully for selectman in 2011, said he would have preferred to give his time and effort to the whole town but that he will focus on his efforts helping to run local youth sports leagues.

"(The loss) doesn't mean I'm going to give up on the town," he said.

Uncontested races on the ballot included newcomer Paige Impink and incumbent Patricia Pino winning seats on the Library Board of Trustees and Jamey Cutelis and incumbent Dennis Francis winning three-year terms on the Tewksbury School Committee.

The complete, unofficial results from Saturday's Tewksbury Election can be found on a PDF document attached to this story.

Check back with Tewksbury Patch for more on Saturday's Election.


Bruce Panilaitis April 16, 2012 at 02:58 PM
Hi Scott, I do work at Tufts. But these observations have been shared by many others regardless of their background. I appreciate your comments. I'm glad you can rest easy for a while on the field question. I know you were a vocal opponent based on your concerns living so close. Would you be in support of a plan that excluded the lights and/or the expanded seating?
Bill. S April 16, 2012 at 03:12 PM
Sorry Running Green I knew what you meant and should have worded my response differently. I just cant understand how this was allowed to happen and who gave the ok. I used to see these guys down there playing in that spot. What happens if they decide not to play their game there anymore?
Bee Free April 16, 2012 at 03:41 PM
congrats to all who ran, all who were elected, and all who turned out to vote much of the world never has this opportunity exercise your freedom
SD From T-Bury April 16, 2012 at 03:53 PM
Agreed. I am shocked and disappointed with Mr. Wilson's comments. I supported and voted for him despite his support of Q1. To hear his comments afterward makes me wish I'd voted differently.
SD From T-Bury April 16, 2012 at 03:55 PM
Well, I know many young families (including mine) that voted against this. Come back and ask when the town is in better fiscal shape.
SD From T-Bury April 16, 2012 at 03:56 PM
Yes, I am having a lot of post-election regret after seeing Mr. Wilson's comments.
Scott Wilson April 16, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Michael, Thanks for your feedback. Though I am not 100% sure you understand the question that was asked and the answer I gave. Putting in tennis courts, turf and lights to me is not about athletics...it is about the economic development in this community. I think having the right facilities in this community which brings new people in and makes us a more attractive community to live in, is more important than any one person sitting on the BOS. I love when people attack me because of something I said. I would hope that you chose to vote for me based on the sound decisions that I have made over the last three years and not a comment I made while answering a reporters question. If we continue to do what we've always done...the results will stay the same. People want to criticize the current BOS who handled a $120 Water & Sewer debt and suggest that we are responsible for high rates. The votes over the last 15 years voted to spend that money. This small investment in our HS does not compare to that debt. I have not heard of a lot of people looking to move to communities based on their sewer system...but I have heard them look at the school system.
Scott Wilson April 16, 2012 at 04:17 PM
If you feel strongly about the fire station being open 365 then you could certainly sponsor an article to either have prop 2.5 override to add more funds to the fire department. While revenues have declined and state aid has dropped, we have managed to cut back on services while also keeping the town safe. With the station closed the run times to S.Tewksbury have not increased and we have also managed to do more with less. I welcome anyone to take a look at the budget and offer suggestions on where the extra money can come from for streets, playgrounds, fire stations, etc. I personally think a $20 investment per year for 10 years is worth the potential growth and economic development that can be created. Others disagree, that is their right. As a taxpayer and voter, I also have that right.
Scott Wilson April 16, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Melissa, I am curious what analysis you conducted to determine that voters don't come to TM because of apathy? I just spent the last 12 months researching this stuff, talking to residents and other communties and that is not the answer I got. More people talked about work, working night shifts, sports for their kids, MCAS testing going on that week and wanting to be home with their kids and not out with a babysitter.... You can give me all the time needed to know the date of town meeting but if my job requires me to be out of town, I don't have an option to absentee or make other arrangements. If your kid has a game, I don't think you tell them that they can't play so you can go to town meeting. I believe many voters care but don't have a way to make the time to attend. I was disappointed in the voter turnout this weekend but I know a lot of people who took the time to absenteee before they want on vacation.
Scott Wilson April 16, 2012 at 04:30 PM
Jan, For those who know me well, they know that I speak my mind and I shared my honest thoughts to the questions asked. I can't take it back. I still feel that seeing us make this town great, is what I am hoping for and I believe this was an intergral part of moving this town forward. I believe it makes us more attractive and will draw in new people and new revenue. Unfortunately it didn't pass and I was disappointed. Now its time to go back to work and keep this town moving in the right direction. Scott
bk April 16, 2012 at 07:11 PM
It appears that many of us concentrated on the near term trouble? of 20$/year over the long term advantages of this project e.g. making our community more attractive, bringing in new people, bringing new revenues etc as it was said on this thread. I voted YES on Q1 because I could see the long term benefit for the community from it. We sure have other problems and we need to look at them as we make progress. Voting no on Q1 is not going to fix those problems any ways. But right now we are in the process of building the new HS and equipping it makes relevant for 'now' to me. --BK
jo April 16, 2012 at 07:23 PM
I did not vote for Scott Wilson. I do not support his views. He won fair and square and that is how the system works. He is being consistent in his comments. There should be no question in anybody's mind that he supports the Sports Complex and the elimination of Town Meeting he has been very open about that. Now is not the time to complain about him. The voters spoke and returned him to office.
Michael Adams April 16, 2012 at 08:12 PM
Mr Wison, I think your a smart guy, I appreaciate your hard work on the BOS and the Charter issue....you cant honestly believe people will move to Town based on the sports complex.... I can tell you why they wont, water and sewer rates, for one I dont blame you for the rates and the debacle surrounding it, but a new complex is not going to be this huge economic cash windfall in the area of hundreds of thousands of dollars to jump right into our Town bank account. Would it be nice? YES, but so wouldnt a new vehicle for my family, but I cant afford it and neither can the Town. Thanks for the info on how to get the fire station open.
Bill. S April 16, 2012 at 08:24 PM
Scott, You are right about the sewer system and I have always thought the same thing. People dont ask about sewer when looking to buy but they will ask about schools. with that said, the sewer project is done, for good or for worse and we all are paying for it and I think people (some) are just not in a spending mood now with high water bills and tax increases. even for a mere $20 per year. sure the new complex would be great but the vote tells me that people have seen enough increases right now
Anne-Marie April 16, 2012 at 09:03 PM
I keep hearing how awful the fields are into for sports. Years ago when my kids played soccer in Tewksbury, the fields where horrible. They raised my by selling candy bars. Why can't the teams do this? It does not have to be candy bars but something on that idea.
DM April 16, 2012 at 09:04 PM
The voters decided, that should be the end of it. Possibly the FOTAC was asking for too much.
denise April 16, 2012 at 09:09 PM
True...end it...i have a bad feeling about this "going to a town meeting" bologna...FYI...i didnt vote for wilson, because of his stand on the "Super Complex"...
Mary April 16, 2012 at 10:36 PM
I didn't vote for Mr. Wilson because of his stand on the "Super Complex" and the Town Council form of Government. I agree with you Denise!
Cindy April 16, 2012 at 10:56 PM
All a utters of the high school Wilson will be bringing this to town meeting! Scott can you sing I'm a back door man!
StephFace April 16, 2012 at 11:25 PM
utters haha
jo April 17, 2012 at 12:24 AM
Regarding Mr. Miano's comments about not running if Mr. Johnson and Mrs. Stronach run, is it time to look at term limits. I belive both incumbents are entering their sixth year in office. I believe that it is dificult to overcome an incumbent (name recognition). Even though this year Mr. Kelley did defeat an incumbent, however I believe that the Kelley name is better known than the Downing name. I hate to see qualified challengers reluctant to run. An infusion of new ideas/personalities could be beneficial to the town. I think that a 6 year limit on serving could be considered.
Melissa Gleaton April 17, 2012 at 01:25 AM
Agreed, 100%
Melissa Gleaton April 17, 2012 at 01:26 AM
I'd like to see the tennis courts and possibly the expanded seating. I'd be happy to support those measures.
Cindy April 17, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Thank you bob ...where has Keith been. I worry that the people who voted no thought that this is the end of this but some of us have seen how this can change at town meeting. They had this article all ready to bring to town meeting hoping that most voters that voted against will not show up at town meeting! He knows better!
Cindy April 17, 2012 at 11:05 AM
Bob r. I like they way you think. Please run against Wilson when his term is up
Cindy April 17, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Let's see what he does at town meeting .....charter change? This will end open town meeting am I right Keith ?
Tewksbury2001 April 17, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Who approved and paid for this cement in the middle of a ball field? I hope it was not town dollars?
Dave April 17, 2012 at 07:07 PM
tee hee hee give me an-utter
Tewksbury2001 April 17, 2012 at 07:24 PM
Can someone explain what the "block schedule" is? What is it and how is it different than other schools?
Rick M April 19, 2012 at 03:49 AM
Hey mikey, I love your show on sports talk radio, you crack me up! Just wanted to let you know that the south fire house is still closed. Can't believe they won't even staff an ambulance down there!


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