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11/06/2017 11:00 PM

Killingworth Votes for Iino

Cathy Iino will return as Killingworth’s first selectman. Unofficial results show her with 1,107 votes to her Republican challenger Fred Dudek’s 936, and her Killingworth Conservative Party challenger John Samperi’s 188. She will be seated on the Board of Selectmen with fellow Democrat Louis Annino, Jr., and Republican Nancy Gorski.

Turnout was an impressive 48.5 percent, and there will be two runoffs in tight races for seats on the Planning and Zoning Commission and on the Zoning Board of Appeals.

Iino said she was happy to have prevailed in the hard-fought race.

“It was very close. I felt good today because I had so much positive responses from people coming in to vote, but I really didn’t know” what was going to happen until the results were announced, she said.

She expressed regret that Dudek would no longer be serving on the Board of Selectmen.

“I’ve really enjoyed serving with Fred. He has been on the board longer than I was. It was a good relationship,” she said. “But I’m looking forward to serving with Nancy, too. And Lou will be back, so that’s good.”

She added that she was grateful to her campaign manager and to all of the volunteers who helped her make her case to voters.

Dudek said it was a tough race, fought at a “very high level,” and that he was “sorry we lost it.”

“We have some great ideas,” he said. He noted that Samperi’s tally, 188, was the “margin of victory.”

Dudek said he did not have any immediate plans, other than to take some time off with his wife, and to get back into a normal routine.

“At my age, I think I still have a lot to give. I will stay active in emergency services, and maybe after a few months, I’ll get on a few committees and help out. But it’ll be great to have a regular life back.”

Samperi was not immediately available for comment.

Cross-endorsed incumbent Town Clerk Dawn Mooney won 1,122 votes on the Democratic line and 965 votes on the Republican line. Cross-endorsed incumbent Town Treasurer Claudette Lagasse won 1,096 votes on the Democratic line and 977 votes on the Republican line.

For Board of Finance, voters supported Republican Matthew Young (1,153 votes) and Democrats Gwenne Celmer 1,049) and Annie Stirna (1,000). Challengers David Hudson (R), Jason Weinstein (R), John Psenicnik (KC), Gerald Papoosha (KC), and Neal Garber (KC) were unsuccessful.

For the Board of Assessment Appeals, Democrat Matt Stillman and Republican Julie Phelps will be seated. Stillman won 1,026 votes and Phelps 1,024.

For the Planning & Zoning Commission, voters chose Democrat Geoff Cook (1,158) and Republicans David Gross (1,138) and Brice McLaughlin (1,069); Democrat Stephanie Warren (1,057) and Republican Ron Fine (1,068) will not be seated. Democrat Joan Gay returned to her PZC Alternate seat with 1,444 votes.

For Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), voters chose Republican Cheryl Fine (1,234) and Democrat Brian Young (1,153); Republican Bruce Campbell won 1,146 votes. Democrat Ben Charney will be seated as ZBA alternate with 1,402 votes.

Democrat Bryan Mahoney and Republican Todd Hajek will serve on the Board of Fire Commissioners.

For Regional Board of Education, voters selected Republican Eileen Blewett (1,406) and Democrat Kathleen Zandi (1,170); Republican Derek Phelps won 1,024 votes.

Killingworth voters also voted for regional judge of probate, giving Democrat Jeannine Lewis 1,177 votes and Republican Anselmo Delia 836 votes; we will post the winner of that race when regional results are available.