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Easton's Election Scheduling Problem Prompts Shaban To Act

Wendy Bowditch was elected Easton's interim treasurer in a special election only weeks from election day this past Nov. 6.
Wendy Bowditch was elected Easton's interim treasurer in a special election only weeks from election day this past Nov. 6. Photo Credit: File

EASTON, Conn. – State Rep. John Shaban has introduced legislation to facilitate the scheduling of special elections. It was introduced in response to last fall's cumbersome special election for Easton’s interim treasurer.

The treasuer's election was held Oct. 26, two weeks before the Nov. 6 general election, and cost the town close to $4,000, according to town clerk Derek Buckley. “Easton incurred both the expense and difficulty of having to manage the absentee and other ballots for two almost simultaneous elections,” he said.

The special vote was held after the town appointed Wendy Bowditch as interim treasurer and Robert Webbe and Vincent Caprio petitioned for a new election. Bowditch won the special election and will serve the remainder of the term until the election in November.

Buckley spoke with Shaban and State Sen. John McKinney to request the legislation. "It's not controversial, but it had never happened before," he said.

“I proposed the bill a couple of weeks ago to address that situation,” Shaban said. “I’m trying to get the Secretary of State to combine the special election if it’s within a month of the general election. It’s in the pipeline and it makes sense. People in Easton were exercising their rights, but we could have saved some money.”

The special election was required because Connecticut statutes determine the range of dates on which it could be held and there was no discretion in scheduling it to coincide with the general election, Buckely said.

The new bill will allow the Secretary of the State “to combine a special municipal election with a regular election if the special municipal election falls within 30 days of the regular election.”

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