June 24, 2018
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Contested City Council race takes shape in Ellsworth

By Mario Moretto, BDN Staff

ELLSWORTH, Maine — An incumbent, a newcomer and a former councilor will duke it out for two open seats on Ellsworth’s legislative body.

Voters will choose two councilors when they hit the polls on Nov. 6. Three candidates returned papers to be placed on the ballot. Stephen Beatham, who has served three tenures on the council, will again appear on the ballot. Also running are former councilor and House District 38 representative Robert Crosthwaite and Marc Blanchette, owner of Windsor Chairmakers Inc.

Beatham is running for re-election after having served on the council from 1985 to 1990, 1993 to 1999, and 2003 to present. The other council seat up for grabs has been vacant since June, when former councilor Matthew Boucher left Ellsworth to take a job promotion in North Conway, N.H. Councilors on Aug. 20 declared his seat vacant for reasons of ineligibility and abandonment.

Had he stayed in Ellsworth, Boucher would have faced re-election in November. So both open seats are for full, three-year terms.

A few lawn signs already have appeared throughout the downtown area for Blanchette and Crosthwaite.

Ellsworth voters also will choose a new representative for the Regional School Unit 24 board. Casey E. Hardwick and Dawn Ihle Hudson are running to replace Harold “Tug” White, whose term expires this year.

The last local election on the ballot is an uncontested race to fill two positions on the Library Board of Trustees. Incumbent Ronald J. Fortier — brother of Council Chairman Gary Fortier — is running for another term on the board, and Robert A. Girmsheid will replace current board member Jason Barrett.

Several other potential candidates for city council and the library board took out papers, but did not return them by the Sept. 22 deadline.

Follow Mario Moretto on Twitter at @riocarmine.

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