Early Nomination Papers Reveal Some Surprises in Council, School Committee

Former City Councilor Cynthia Sarnie is intending to run for School Committee, while Ward 2 Councilor Steve Simonelli has pulled papers for at-large Council, and Councilor Anthony DiPierro has ended the rumors by announcing he is 100 percent committed to running for re-election.

All that came this week as Monday was the first day that potential candidates could pull Nomination Papers with the intention of running for City Council or School Committee.

This City Election season, virtually every seat is up for grabs as the city undergoes one of the most crucial years in its history with the Encore Boston Harbor casino set to open in June – not to mention turmoil in the once-solid School Department, opening up School Committee seats that were virtually closed off to anyone for decades.

Candidate must get 250 signatures on the Papers and return them to the Election Commission to be considered for the ballot. Once those signatures of registered voters are confirmed, the Commission will certify a candidate for the ballot in either the September Preliminary or the November City Election.

•School Committee

So far, there has only been one surprise on the School Committee in what many expected would be a wide open race.

That surprise is former City Councilor Sarnie filing her papers for at-large School Committee. After losing her Council seat last fall very narrowly, Sarnie has maintained her presence at City and community events and appears to be ready to take on the School Committee.

Another newcomer in the at-large field is Richard Liston, who lives on Cottage Street.

At-large Incumbents Berardino D’Onofrio and Millie Cardello have also pulled papers.

In Ward 1, Edgar Ruiz of Lewis Street in the Triangle has pulled papers – potentially challenging incumbent Allen Panarese.

Incumbents Frank Parker (Ward 4), and Marcony Almeida Barros (Ward 5) have also pulled Nomination Papers.

•City Council at-Large

In the Council at-large race, Councilor Wayne Matewsky was the first of anyone to pull Nomination Papers on Monday, and he said he was ready to embark on another race.

Incumbent John Hanlon has also pulled papers, but none of the other incumbents had yet pulled by Tuesday afternoon.

Meanwhile, Ward 2 Councilor Stephen Simonelli – who has moved out of Ward 2 – has filed to run for at-large councilor. For many insiders, that was not a surprise move.

Newcomer James Lavecchio, of Oliver Street, has pulled his papers, and that was a surprise for a lot of folks. Lavecchio is known for throwing a blockbuster July 4th party on Oliver Street for the last 50 years – a tradition he closed down last summer.

Others pulling Nomination Papers include Leo Barrett and Rev. Renee Solano.

•Council Ward Races

So far, the only race in the wards is in Ward 2 – where there is effectively now an open seat with Simonelli filing for at-large.

Pulling papers are two veterans of the local scene, including Stephanie Martins of Lexington Street and Jason Marcus of Dartmouth Street.

In addition, incumbents Fred Capone (Ward 1), Anthony DiPierro (Ward 3), John Leo McKinnon (Ward 4), and Rosa DiFlorio (Ward 5) have also pulled papers. Ward 6 Councilor Michael McLaughlin said he was still surveying the scene but planned to pull his ward papers next week.

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