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In the Tuesday, Nov. 5 municipal elections, Deep River has two main races to watch: the seat for first selectman and the seats for the Board of Finance.
Petitioning candidate Augusto “Gus” Lucarelli is challenging incumbent Democrat Angus McDonald for the first selectman seat.
In 2016 after the sudden death of former, long-time first selectman Dick Smith, McDonald, then an elected selectman, was appointed first selectman. In 2017, McDonald ran for the seat unopposed.
McDonald moved to Deep River in 2005 and has said he is proud of the progress he has helped the town make over the past few years and he is looking to further that progress into the future.
An immigrant who came to America with his family at a very young age, Lucarelli grew up in Old Saybrook. He has lived in Deep River for the past 20-plus years and is the owner of Deep River-based Lucarelli Fence. Lucarelli, was endorsed by the Republican Town Committee but chose to appear on the ballot as a petitioning candidate. He feels that his alliance with the working people of Deep River makes him a perfect fit for the position of first selectman.
The losing candidate in the first selectman race will compete with the two selectman candidates for second and third selectmen. Of the three, the two with the most votes will serve on the Board of Selectmen alongside the winner of the first selectman race.
Incumbent Democrat Duane Gates and incumbent Republican James Olson are running for the seats of selectman.
Olson was sworn into office in April 2019 when selectman Bill Burdick made the decision to resign from the board. Olson is a long-time resident of Deep River and he previously served on the Deep River Elementary School Board of Education, and the Region 4 Board of Education, as well as being a part of the Fire Department and Ambulance Association.
Gates is also a longtime resident of Deep River and has served in the past on the Deep River Elementary School Board of Education and the Region 4 Board of Education.
There are three candidates for the two open seats for the six-year term of the Board of Finance: incumbent Democrat Lori Guerette and incumbent Democrat Russel Marth, as well as Republican Carol Hanover.
Hanover has served as the chairman of the Old Saybrook Board of Education in the past and she was the past president and board member of the Old Saybrook Chamber of Commerce for several years. She is the regional director for Travelers, overseeing a team in New York City, Hartford, and upstate New York.
Guerette has been a Deep River Board of Finance member since 2007. She attended Southern Connecticut State University and is an ophthalmic photographer and assistant.
Marth has been a member of the Deep River government in a variety of different capacities over the years. He was seated on the Deep River Board of Finance in 2013. Other civic posts have included, one term as selectman (2007 to 2009). He was also part of the town’s study committee focusing on town nursing services and in 2010 was elected chairman of the newly formed Community Health Committee.
The rest of the seats on the Deep River ballot are uncontested races.
Amy MacMillan Winchell (R) will be re-elected as town clerk.
Thomas Lindner (R) will be re-elected as treasurer and agent of school deposit fund.
Katherine L. Cryder (D) will be re-elected as tax collector.
On the Board of Education (BOE), incumbents Paula S. Weglarz (R, chair) and Democrats Tracy L. Dickson and Miriam Morrissey will be re-elected to four-year terms. Republican Scott J. Hullden will fill a BOE two-year vacancy.
For the Region 4 BOE, Jane Cavanaugh (D) will serve a six-year term.
Democrats Annie Lewis and Roy M. Jefferson will serve six-year terms as library trustees.
Tuesday, Oct. 29 is the deadline for regular voter registration (in-person, mail-in, or online) before the Nov. 5 election. All mail-in voter registration applications must be postmarked no later than Oct. 29.
Find more information on the candidates and voter registration information in our Online Voter Guide at Zip06.com.