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Voters pick Ricketts, Wainstein

Preliminary election chooses candidates for Precinct 5 race

  • Penny Ricketts

    Penny Ricketts

  • Penny Ricketts

GREENFIELD — Penny Ricketts and Robert Wainstein will vie for the Precinct 5 seat in the town’s annual June election.

Ricketts received 126 votes in Tuesday’s preliminary election, ensuring a spot on the June ballot, while Wainstein followed close behind with 115 votes.

A third candidate, retired Greenfield firefighter John Lyford, received 41 votes.

“I’m totally shocked that I got the most votes,” said Ricketts. “Now I plan to get out and meet everyone in my precinct. I’ll be knocking on doors over the next couple of months. I want people to know where I stand on the issues.”

Ricketts said she was happy with Tuesday’s voter turnout, because of the precinct’s 1,312 voters, 282, or 20 percent, cast ballots.

Wainstein said he appreciates all of the people who voted, no matter who they voted for, on such a rainy, miserable day.

“I’m excited to move forward,” said Wainstein. “I’m also happy for Penny.”

Wainstein said he looks forward to campaigning over the next couple of months.

“I plan to get out there,” he said. “I’ll be talking with people about the issues and about the town’s new sustainable master plan.”

Ricketts and Wainstein said they will be studying some of the town’s most pressing issues, including some proposed ordinances, over the next few days and weeks.

Both said last week that they support the Conservation Commission’s rewrite of the town’s wetlands ordinance, but Wainstein said he wants a clause added that would protect the town financially when a large project is built.

Ricketts said she does not support a plastic bag ban, while Wainstein said it’s a good idea in theory, but might end up causing a hardship on some local businesses.

Both said they need to know more about a citizen-proposed Native American burial ground ordinance before either could support it.

The two will now advance to the annual election, which will be held June 10.

In the meantime, former Town Councilor Barbara Tillmanns plans to invite the two to participate in a debate she is organizing for all of this year’s candidates.

The debate will be held May 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the studio in Greenfield Community Television, 393 Main St.

Shelburne Selectman Joseph Judd will moderate the debate.

Tillmanns, who is producing the debate, said there will be a panelist from The Recorder and WHAI. She said George Gohl, co-owner of Greenfield Garden Cinemas and chairman of the Greenfield Republican Committee, and Donovan Eastman, former Greenfield School Committee member and chairman of the Greenfield Democratic Town Committee, will also be panelists.

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