Glocester candidates line up for town elections

Glocester candidates line up for town elections

GLOCESTER - Although no local run-off election will be needed, the race for Glocester Town Council promises to be a lively contest until November, with seven candidates declaring for the five-member board.

In the absence of a town manager or mayor, the council essentially runs the town and to date is dominated by Republican incumbents Edward Burlingame, George "Buster" Steere Jr. and Walter M.O. Steere III, council president. All three filed declarations to run for re-election, and the local Republican party endorsed Buster Steere and Burlingame, but not Walter Steere, according to the town clerk's office.

The two independent incumbents, William E. Reichert and Steven A. Sette, both declared for re-election.

Rounding out the seven-candidate field are Michael L. DeGrange and Stephanie L. Westgate, both endorsed Republicans. DeGrange, credited with resurrecting the nearly-defunct July 4th Ancient & Horribles Parade, is chairman of the parade committee and Westgate is vice chairman.

DeGrange, 36, formerly served on the Town Council for about six months, replacing former Police Chief Jamie Hainsworth when he became U.S. Marshal for the Rhode Island District in 2012. DeGrange was named "Citizen of the Year" by the Chepachet Grange earlier this year for his work on the parade.

"I was surprised and really humbled," he said.

DeGrange suggested that his and Westgate's success on the parade committee bodes well for their work on the Town Council if elected.

"We saved the parade, we brought back the fireworks," DeGrange said. "Imagine what we could do on the Town Council."

Republicans filing declarations with the town clerk in Glocester were, for town moderator, Kevin Walsh (endorsed), 1241 Putnam Pike; for town clerk, longtime incumbent Jean M. Fecteau (endorsed), 55 Keach Pond Drive; director of human services, Judith Ann Branch (endorsed), 66 Chestnut Hill Road.

For Town Council, Burlingame, 585 Tourtellot Hill Road; DeGrange, 686 Chopmist Hill Road; Buster Steere, 96 John Steere Road; Westgate, 15A Sydney Winsor Road; and Walter Steere, 358 Chestnut Hill Road. All the Republican candidates live in Chepachet.

Only one Democrat filed for local office, Ann M. Glew (endorsed), 203 Waterman Lake Drive, Chepachet.

Independents declaring for council are Reichert, 210 Old Snake Hill Road, Chepachet, and Sette, 176 Snake Hill Road.

Two potential candidates declared their intentions to run for state Senate from District 23, Burrillville, Glocester and North Smithfield: incumbent Sen. Paul W. Fogarty, endorsed Republican, 112 Saw Mill Road, P.O. Box 37, Harmony; and independent Lauri A. Archambault, 43 Chopmist Hill Road, Chepachet.

Rep. Michael W. Chippendale, a Republican from District 40, Foster, Coventry and Glocester, may face a challenge from Joseph D. Cardillo, a Democrat.

Running unopposed for his House District 47 seat, representing Burrillville and Glocester, is Rep. Cale P. Keable, a Democrat.

It is important to note that no one is officially a candidate until he or she returns nomination papers with a certain number of signatures from registered voters by a specific date. Most local offices require 50 signatures. Nomination papers were issued July 1 and must be returned by July 11 in Glocester.