October 22, 2021

Windham candidates make pitch for town residents' votes

By Ed Pierce

With less than two weeks before voters head to the polls on Election Day in Windham town government and school board candidates are making their case to residents and hoping to obtain enough votes to be elected to a handful of available positions.

The election will be on Tuesday, Nov. 2 in the Auxiliary Gym at Windham High School. Polls open at 7 a.m. and will close at 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Windham Town Clerk Linda S. Morrell said that there are more than 14,447 registered voters in Windham, but not all of them are expected to turnout for this year’s election.

"I would expect between the absentees and in-person voting at the polls about 2,500 to 3,800 votes which has been the turnout in the past,” Morrell said.

Windham candidates on the Nov. 2 ballot include incumbent David J. Nadeau, who is running unopposed for the Windham Town Council’s At-Large seat for a three-year term.    

Nadeau has spent the past year as the chair of the Windham Town Council and has been a town councilor for 10 years. Prior to that, Nadeau served 10 years as a member of Windham’s Planning Board. He was a recipient of the Maine Planners Association’s Citizen Award in 2020 for his long-term vision for the community, volunteerism, mentoring other volunteers and elected officials as well as going above and beyond in understanding planning initiatives and goals of Windham’s future success.

Another incumbent, Edward M. Ohmott, is seeking a one-year term on the council for an At-Large position.

Ohmott was appointed to fill the At-Large vacancy on the council during a meeting in May after the resignation of former Windham Town Councilor David Douglass. Ohmott previously served on Windham’s Smith Cemetery Committee and Long-Range Planning Committee. Since his appointment to the council, Ohmott has been a member of the town’s Marijuana License Fee Committee.

He’s the former president of Champion Cordage, an industrial supplies and equipment firm in California.

No declared candidate filed paperwork for the Windham Town Council’s West District for a three-year term by the deadline in September, but William Reiner has announced his candidacy as a write-in candidate for the position. The West District seat is currently held by Timothy Nangle, but he did not file papers for re-election.

Reiner moved to Windham in 2016 and works in the Critical Care nursing field.

Morrell also is also seeking re-election to the town clerk position. She worked for eight years as a town ballot clerk, then another seven years as a deputy clerk for the Town of Windham. She has served the last 27 years as Windham’s Town Clerk overseeing elections and the town clerk’s office at the Windham Town Hall. 

Incumbent Jennie Butler, who taught math at the high school level for 31 years and part-time at the University of Southern Maine is seeking re-election to the RSU 14 Board of Directors.

Also vying for a seat on the board are newcomers Barbara Bagshaw, Jessica M.H. Bridges, and Michael Pasquini.

Two other candidates, Christina Small, an incumbent, and Carrie Grant, have withdrawn as RSU 14 Board of Directors candidates, but their names will be on the Nov. 2 ballot for voters.

Also on the ballot are three referendum questions.

Question 1 asks voters if they want to ban the construction of high-impact electric transmission lines in the Upper Kennebec Region and to require the Maine Legislature to approve all other such projects anywhere in Maine, both retroactively to 2020, and to require the legislature, retroactively to 2014, to approve by a two-thirds vote such projects using public land.

Question 2 asks voters for approval to issue $100 million in general obligation bonds for transportation infrastructure projects, including $85 million for the construction, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of highways and bridges and $15 million for facilities or equipment related to transit, freight and passenger railroads, aviation, ports and harbors, marine transportation, and active transportation projects.

Question 3 asks voters for approval to create a state constitutional amendment to declare that individuals have a "natural, inherent and unalienable right to food," including "the right to save and exchange seeds" and "the right to grow, raise, harvest, produce and consume the food of their own choosing for their own nourishment, sustenance, bodily health and well-being." <

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