POLAND – Voters chose a newcomer to town politics and a familiar face for the two open Board of Selectmen seats in a light election turn-out Friday.

Wendy Sanborn spent most of the day Friday pacing the downstairs of the old Town Hall building where the polling booths were set up. This election marked Sanborn’s first attempt at running for any public office. She garnered the most votes with 144.

“I’m still in shock,” said Sanborn when results were read. “I really look forward to serving the town.”

Reginald “Bud” Jordan, on the other hand, had been through the waiting process many times before. Having served on the board for 22 years, Jordan won a chance to serve another 3-year term as selectman. Jordan received 120 votes.

“Well, I feel pretty good,” said Jordan. “I’ll do the best I can – just like I’ve always done.”

Also on hand to hear the results first hand and to offer congratulations was long-time Poland resident Brian Mello with 112 votes. Larry Moreau, currently serving on the town’s Planning Board and Budget Committee, received 115 votes.

Both Sanborn and Jordan took positions favoring small business but keeping Poland a rural community. Jordan took issue with the rapid residential development and increasing property taxes, while Sanborn focused on accountability of public officials and openness of town business.

After polls closed at 7 p.m., three pairs of election workers managed to count and double check all the ballots in less than an hour. Only 282 of the town’s 3,596 active registered voters participated this year. Last year’s election brought out 337 voters.

While Sanborn said she didn’t know what to expect, Jordan and Mello noted that fewer and fewer voters seem to come out to the polls for the local elections. They made the same comment about annual town meetings.

“The light turn-out could have been because this is the first year that the elections came in the same week as school vacation,” said Town Clerk Judith Akers. “It could be that a lot of people were away.”

The town received 17 absentee ballots.

Akers, daughter to Jordan, pointed out that all election workers take an oath before performing their duties. Barbara Strout, election warden and deputy moderator, verified and read the official results.

Sanborn and Jordan will be sworn in as new board members at today’s town meeting. They replace Lionel Ferland Jr. and Patricia Nash. They will join current selectmen David Corcoran, Stephen Robinson and Glenn Peterson.

Also on this year’s ballot but running unopposed were Library Trustees candidates Rhonda Amato and John Farrell and School Committee candidate Laurie Levine.

Levine ran as an incumbent and received 180 votes. Amato and Farrell replace Phyllis Smith and Linda Watson on the library board. They each received 192 votes.


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