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Westport Parties Pick Their Candidates

WESTPORT, Conn. – It's official — the town's Democratic and Republican parties selected their candidates Tuesday night for the November municipal elections. Seats for the Board of Finance, Board of Education, Planning and Zoning Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals and Board of Assessment Appeals will be on the ballot.

For the Board of Finance, which handles all of the town's accounts, approves all spending and sets the tax rate each year, the Democratic Town Committee endorsed incumbent Ken Wirfel and newcomer Janis Collins, who currently is chairwoman of the Parks and Recreation Commission. Allyson Stollenwerck is not seeking re-election.

The Republican Town Committee endorsed incumbent Tom Lasersohn, newcomer John Pincavage and Mike Rea, current chairman of the Representative Town Meeting's Finance Committee. Ed Iannone is not seeking re-election.

For the Board of Education, which makes all policy and spending decisions for the Westport public school system, the Democratic candidates include incumbent Mark Mathias and newcomer Michael Gordon. Faith Taylor is not seeking re-election. Although not running, Bob LaFleur and Karen Hess are serving as placeholders for the Republican Party. Sandy DeFelice is not running again.

For the Planning and Zoning Commission, which enforces Westport's zoning laws, the Democratic candidate is Jennifer Johnson, who currently is a member of the Parks and Recreation Commission. Eleanor Lowenstein is not running again.

Republican candidates for the commission include incumbent Cathy Walsh, and newcomers Chip Stephens and Jack Whittle. Tim Wetmore has been chosen as a placeholder. David Press and Mike Krawiec are not going for re-election.

The Democratic candidate for Zoning Board of Appeals, which holds hearings on projects that failed to get approval from the Planning and Zoning Commission, is incumbent Jim Ezzes. The Republican candidates are incumbents William Harris Jr. and Elizabeth Wong.

For the three-member Board of Assessment Appeals, which hears citizens' concerns about their assessed property values, only the Republican seat is open for re-election. Incumbent Garson Heller Jr. was endorsed by his party.

Do you have a favorite candidate? Who will best serve the town? Start the discussion below.

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