By GAIL LOWE and BOB BURGESS
WAKEFIELD — Predictions of a low turnout in today’s annual municipal election seemed to be coming true at 10 a.m., with just 1.7 percent of the community’s 17,460 registered voters having participated in the first three hours.
At the West Side Social Club this morning, Precinct 6 Warden Kristen Henshaw said only 5 percent of residents in her precinct were projected to vote.
Temporary Town Clerk Rosemary Morgan said early numbers show that by 10 a.m. 300 people across town had voted: 50 each in Precincts 1, 2 and 7; 29 in Precinct 3; 31 in Precinct 4; 49 in Precinct 5 and 41 in Precinct 6.
Henshaw said that turnout at the West Side Social Club was “disappointing” and that she wanted people to vote.
“We’re so pleased that people have come to vote,” said Henshaw. “I’ve been encouraging everyone to go home and get their friends and family to vote, too. We’re here until 8 p.m.”
While voter participation may be disappointing this year, there are only two contested races to pique their interest. Incumbents Janine Cook and Kathryn Morgan are being challenged by newcomer Rob Tiro for one of two seats on the School Committee and current Planning Board Chairman Mathew Lowry, running for a five year planner’s term, faces off against Dennis Cloherty of Harvest Road.
Those in Precincts 1 and 7 vote at the Masonic Building, 372 Salem St. Voters in Precincts 2 and 3 cast ballots at the Crystal Community Club, 71 Preston St. Greenwood’s Precinct 4 votes at Most Blessed Sacrament Church, 1155 Main St. And voters in Precincts 5 and 6 go to their regular polling place at the West Side Social Club, 4 Harrington Ct.
For this year’s annual election, there are 17,460 residents registered to vote. There are 2,619 registered in Precinct 1; 2,262 in Precinct 2; 2,511 in Precinct 3; 2,302 in Precinct 4; 2,677 in Precinct 5; 2,656 in Precinct 6, and 2,433 in Precinct 7.
During the 2014 municipal election, with just one contested race for a selectman’s seat, only 980 people cast ballots, good for a turnout of 5.71 percent, according to Rosemary Morgan.
This is what voters have for choices today.
Board of Selectmen: Two three year terms. Incumbents Paul DiNocco of 17 Wiley St. and Brian E. Falvey, 70 Andrews Rd., seek reelection.
Tax Collector: One three year term. Incumbent Kathleen Kelly, 21 Bryant St., is running for another term.
Moderator: One one year term. William Harbison Carroll, 48 Forest St., is also running for another term.
School Committee: Two three year terms. Incumbents Janine Iengo Cook, 6 Jessica Ln., and Kathryn D. Morgan, 42 Wave Ave., are running for reelection. They are being challenged by Robert A.E. Tiro, 15 Collette Rd.
Library Trustees: Three three year terms. Cindy A. Schatz, Kevin Patrick Scanlon and Yue Ren are running for the open seats. Schatz and Scanlon are incumbents.
Planning Board: One three year term. Christopher J. Fowlie, 21A Summer St., is the lone candidate.
Planning Board: One five year term. Incumbent Matthew Lowry, 86 Green St., is running for reelection. He is being challenged by Dennis Cloherty, 1 Harvest Rd.
Board of Health: One three year term. Incumbent Laurel Skinder Gourville, 33 Reynolds Rd., seeks reeleciton.
Board of Assessors: One three year term. Jane A. D’Addario, 1 Hope Terr., seeks another term on the board.t
Gas and Light Commissioner: Two three year terms. Incumbents Kenneth J. Chase Jr., 10 Mountain Ave., and Michael P. McCarthy, 8 McDonald Farm Rd., seek reelection.
Wakefield Housing Authority: One five year term. On March 4, Maureen E. Hickey, 19 Grove St., took out nomination papers for the position.