NORFOLK — It will be a quiet annual town election Tuesday as there are no contests.
Polls for the 7,636 registered voters are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Freeman-Kennedy School, 70 Boardman St.
“I think with all that people have been through in the past year, this election is about what I expected it to be,” Town Clerk Carol Greene said. “People have a lot on their minds as well as their plates, and running for local office is not necessarily on the top of their priority list.”
While many recent annual town election turnouts have been in the 13 to 15 percent range, that bar likely won’t even be met given the lack of races.
“I think it’s going to be a very low turnout,” Greene said.
The town clerk urges residents to do their civic duty, nonetheless.
“It’s important to vote in every election, even uncontested ones, in order to express your feelings about a candidate. Voting is your voice. Elections are decided by the people who go out and vote. If you support a particular candidate then it is important for you to go out and show your support by voting for them,” Greene said. “If you don’t support a candidate, then there are ways to express that, even when there is not another candidate to vote for.”
A voter has the option to write in another person or leave a position blank.
“When you don’t vote you are giving up your voice and allowing others to make those decisions for you,” Greene added. “Town elections and town meetings are the most direct way for a person to affect their day-to-day lives. People are more directly impacted by their local bylaws, budgets, and local government representation than they are by things at the federal or even state level, but those local level decisions are often made by a small number of people.”
Candidates on the ballot:
- Eric Harmon for a three-year term on the King Philip Regional School Committee to replace board Chairman Michael Gee, who has served since 2010 and decided not to run for re-election.
- Andrew Bakinowski, who has served on various town boards and is an assessor, is set to replace Tom Gilbert on the board of health. Gilbert has been on the board he chairs for four decades.
- Select board Chairman Kevin Kalkut is going for a second three-year term, and local school committee members Jennifer Wynn and Medora Champagne, also for three-year terms.
Other candidates are associate planning board member Christopher Montfort for a seat held by Erin Hunt, Anthony Kennedy for Bakinowski’s board of assessors’ seat, housing authority member Heidi Compagnone for a five-year term, library trustee Patricia McCarty, and recreation commission member William Rigdon.