New candidates, vacancies in Rowe election

ROWE — There are no contests on the town’s May 17 election ballot, but new candidates are running for open three-year selectman and School Committee positions. Also, several town positions have no candidates on the ballot.

One-term incumbent Selectman Noel Abbott is moving out of town and Walter Quist of Ford Hill Road is running for Abbott’s position. Quist has been a town resident for 19 years. Retired from the federal government, he has served on the town Park Commission, is chairman of the Yankee Land Committee and is on the town’s Energy Committee. He was also on the search committee that found a financial consultant for the town a few years ago.

Quist said his goal as a selectman is to see that town government runs smoothly and is transparent to the public. “If people can get answers, and are treated politely and with respect, I think that will encourage people to get more involved with their town government,” he said.

Susan Zavotka of Tunnel Road, chairwoman of the Rowe School Building Committee, is running for the School Committee seat of Cynthia Laffond, who is not running for re-election to a three-year term.

A retired 30-year faculty member of Ohio State University, School Building Committee Chairwoman Zavotka has been spearheading the effort to build a new school building, entirely with the available funds from the town’s insurance coverage and to see that the new school is ready for students by August.

“Through my work on this committee, I have become quite familiar with the Rowe Elementary School program, faculty and staff,” she said. “I would like to be a part of supporting that process through membership on the School Committee.”

In a statement about her run for office, Zavotka says Rowe’s older students “have a long and positive history” with the Mohawk Trail middle and high school, and with the Franklin County Technical School. “I look forward to continuing and building this program through our school committee,” she said.

The voting will be held at the Town Hall; polling hours are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The following incumbents are seeking re-election. All are for three-year terms unless otherwise noted:

Board of Assessors, Frederick Williams; Board of Health, JoAnn Brown; Town Clerk, Jennifer Morse; and Planning Board (five-year term), JoAnn Brown.

The following positions have no candidates on the ballot, and all are for three-year terms: cemetery commissioner; two Finance Committee positions; one library trustee; one park commissioner; and one constable.

Also, an open town treasurer position is listed on the ballot. However, special town meeting voters OK’d a change to make town treasurer an appointed job, instead of an elected position. Town Clerk Jennifer Morse says the change from an elected to an appointed treasurer will appear on the town's election ballot.

(Editor's note: Some information in this story has changed from an earlier edition)

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