North Adams Transcript
CLARKSBURG -- The town’s May 15 election will include a former selectman seeking a return to the board and a new position on the School Committee, along with a current School Committee member seeking a seat on the Board of Selectmen.
Former Selectmen’s Chairwoman Debora LeFave, who resigned from the board in January to pursue the vacant town administrator’s post, is one of three candidates seeking to fill the remaining year of the three-year term she once held. She’s also seeking a seat on the school committee.
Current Selectmen’s Chairman Carl McKinney, who is up for re-election this year, is one of two others who will appear on the ballot for the unexpired term. Resident Gary Bellows is also seeking the seat.
School Committee member Jeffrey Levanos, who is in the midst of his second three-year term, is running unopposed for a McKinney’s seat on the Board of Selectmen. The seat carries a three-year term.
"It was something that has been in the back of my mind for quite a while. I saw an opening this year, and I knew there was going to be a vacancy," Levanos said.
He said he intended to run for selectman at the completion of his second term on the School Committee, but then he learned he could hold both positions.
McKinney said he’s seeking LeFave’s former seat after considering leaving the board altogether.
"The dynamics of the town have certainly changed. I’ve served the town for 11 years, two years on the Finance Committee and three full terms as a selectman, and there are still things there that need to be done," McKinney said. "There are a lot of issues on our plate right now, and I think institutional memory is valuable. I don’t want to leave the town in the lurch. It’s kind of my obligation to run again because of the changing administration."
LeFave, who could not be reached, was selected as a finalist for the town administrator post in February, but withdrew her application. She has since resubmitted her name to be considered in a second search to fill the position.
She is also seeking election to a three-year term on the School Committee currently held by Chairman David Berger, who is seeking re-election. John Solari is also running for the post.
Berger said a lot of things have happened with the school over the last 18 years, and most of them have been positive.
"One of the most sought-after things in Clarksburg is the school," he said. "We’ve had to make some unpopular decisions. When we switched to school choice, we picked up 17 to 18 kids, and that has given us the money to allow us to keep programs, which is very important."
He said he wants to continue to move the school forward and finish some things that have been started, including a renovation of the school.
"What we do is in the best interest of the children with the money appropriated for us at town meeting," Berger said.
Efforts to reach Solari and Bellows Wednesday afternoon were unsuccessful.
Candidates running unopposed for town boards and offices include: Bryan Tanner for a one-year term as moderator; Denise Chesbro for a three-year term for library trustee; Timothy Shea for a three-year term on the Board of Health; Paula Wells for a two-year term on the Board of Health and Harold "Bob" King for a three-year term for war memorial trustee.
A five-year term on the Planning Board, currently held by Shea, will most likely be filled by a write-in candidate.