the Chronicle, page 2, Thursday 11/6/2014, “…bid ends at polls”

Windham third registrar bid ends at the polls


Chronicle Staff Writer

WINDHAM/WILLIMANTIC — Green Party member Douglas Lary lost his second bid to become a registrar of voters during the election Tuesday.

Lary faced off against Democratic Registrar Paulann “ Bunny” Lescoe and Republican Registrar Nancy Rivera during Tuesday’s elections.

When the votes were tallied, Lescoe received 2,805 votes, Rivera received 1,119 votes and Lary received 849 votes.

In order to win the race, Lary would have had to secure more votes than either Lescoe or Rivera.

Lescoe and Rivera automatically won since they did not have opponents.

When reached this morning, Lary said the three registrars ran a civil campaign against each other.

“Nancy, Bunny and I flung no mud,” he said.

In an e-mail this morning, Lary wrote he has enjoyed working with candidates and the registrars of voters in Windham and nearby towns.

“Our Windham registrars have helped me gain additional training and experience over the last few years and we have conducted some very good efforts together,” he wrote. “We can be particularly proud that, through several different approaches, the canvass that checks our voter registration lists has removed voters who are dead, dormant or duplicates.”

He has also helped the registrars with projects such as an evaluation of the adequacy of parking lots at different polling sites and the capacity of those sites.

Lary wrote it is common in towns like Windham and Mansfield for renters and students to register to vote and then leave town within a few years.

“Registrars (Paulann) “Bunny” Lescoe and Nancy Rivera and their deputy registrars have made very substantial progress on this in recent years and I’ve been glad to assist,” Lary wrote.

Each registrar is paid a stipend of $5,000.

Lescoe said this morning she didn’t feel a third registrar was needed in the office, but if there was one, the three would work together.

“I would have to accept it if we had a third registrar,” she said.

If a third registrar was elected, she said the office would continue to operate in a nonpolitical fashion. “It’s definitely a non-political office,” Lescoe said.

Rivera could not be reached for comment this morning.

Lary first lost the registrar race in 2012.

This year, he was endorsed by both the Green Party and the Bottom Line Party.

“I am very thankful I have great supporters,” Lary wrote in an e-mail this morning. “This year, with a web site and Facebook presence, I was able to learn more who is supporting my effort to have minor party and unaffiliated voters represented by someone outside the two national parties in the registrar’s office.”

While Lescoe has been a registrar for 10 years, Rivera has been a registrar for two years.

Prior to being registrar, Rivera was a deputy registrar for eight years.

In his e-mail, Lary vowed to continue to help the registrar’s office with the voter registration list, “I will continue to seek opportunities to improve our local government, our voting mechanics and help candidates be heard by voters whose addresses are correctly recorded,” he wrote.


Windham November 2014 Election Results

20141106 windham 2014 election results candidates

Windham Town Manager Neal Beets today shared in his weekly email “Fast Facts” the Head Moderators Return for our Tuesday election. (see link above).    Tuesday’s the Chronicle also shared preliminary results which included the machine read vote but not likely those later counted by hand from about 90 photocopied ballots that were not machine readable used in district 008 (48th) when preprinted heavy card stock ballots ran out.

In the tight races for governor and state senate district 29 Windham contributed to the wins by Democrats.  The state constitutional question to remove voting restrictions failed statewide (53/47), and the Windham Charter Revisions questions all passed except #4 which sought to modify who may vote in a budget referendum in two ways (the current provisions for property based voters will go forward, not the proposed changes).

Turnout in 2014 was very similar to 2010, down just a bit.  Roughly half of those registered to vote did so in November 2014.

The 3rd party candidate for Registrar of Voters Doug Lary gathered almost as many votes in the lighter turnout 2014 state year (849, 16%) as in 2012 presidential year (875, 12%), but still fell far shy of the votes gathered by the two largest parties where the Republican got this year 1119 votes (21%) and the Democrat again did very well at 2805 votes (53%).   About 9% of the voters who turned out again declined to vote for a candidate in this race, much like in 2014.   The race for Registrar of Voters is an unusual one, both in how the winners are determined, and the gentle civil tone of the campaigns – contrasting greatly with the tone of the races on the left of the ballot.   The major party Registrar candidates Paulann Lescoe and Nancy Rivera are to be congratulated on their second wins over the third party challenger, and complimented on their good manners during this race.

Thank you for your support and your suggestions.

Windham’s 3 polling sites

November 2014 election will use the same 3 “regular” polling sites used since November 2012 (VFW, ELKs, and WCRD).  The map can give you a sense of your polling site, but if you haven’t voted recently, or are near the edge of a colored section of the map, check the streets and street numbers listed for each site at the link to street lists.

Blue - VFW Green - ELKs Red  - Windham Center Fire Dept

Blue – VFW, Green – ELKs,
Red – Windham Center Fire Dept

20141101 Windham polling site’s street lists

Windham Charter as proposed and sent to Voters Nov 2104

20141024 final_charter_with_questions <— this version includes:

  • the questions the Town Council decided to send to the voters on the back of the ballot in November 2014
  • the cover letter from the Charter Revision Commission to the Town Council as the last draft was sent to Town Council following several back and forth tweaks and suggestions
  • the full 30 page text as considered by the Town Council.  Includes strikeouts for text removed, underscores for text added.

It is anticipated that the following shorter “as proposed” version will be published in English and Spanish in The Chronicle soon.  These versions are not likely to have the changes (shown in PDF above) but rather just the resulting proposed version assuming all six questions are resolved with “YES” votes.  This is such a “cleaned up” as proposed text.  Easiest to read but harder to tell what changed.

20140909 Windham Charter redraft after Council Recommendations CRC Responses as passed to voters English Clean v00

Douglas Lary (G, TBL) was Vice Chair of the Charter Revision Commission during its 2nd and 3rd sets of members and handled the editing of drafts towards the end of the commissions work.   About twenty members of the community served on this commission over the more than 2 years it took to consider, and re-consider suggestions from the Town Council, members of the commission over time, and those who visited and spoke to the commission as citizens or delegations.  Others who served on the commission as the work concluded were (Chair) Dennis O’Brien (D), Jan-Maya Schold (D), Pamela Shorey (D), Victor Rayhall (D, TBL), Charles Pennewill (R, TBL), and Priscilla Root (R).   This was a commission spread widely in their opinions, parties, and across the city/villages border.  As too so is our Town Council.  As such, the proposed Windham Town Charter is not exactly as any one of us might have desired, but has come forward through consideration by many and many compromises.  Doug Lary recommends passage with six yes votes but we all pressed to have the issues considered separately by the voters so they could express their desires clearly via six separate questions.

Budget Referendum – good experience for voters and pollworkers

20140513 Doug Lary as Asst Registrar at polls photo by Yolanda Negron More than a thousand voters turned out for Windham’s first budget referendum of 2014.   This moderate turn out kept the voting quick and easy for most voters, but some voters need additional assitance to keep the process running well for this and future polling events.

Doug Lary and Anita Sebestyen worked at the largest polling site together as Assistant Registrars.  They helped voters who needed to update their registration to reflect recent moves or name changes, check in voters who own taxable property, and return voters to active status who had been made inactive by not voting for a long while.  Mild turnout referendums like this help Windham build poll worker experience critical to the smooth operation of big election events such as state and presidential year elections where voter participation soars to as much as eight thousand voters in Windham.

Tuesday 5/13/2014 all three budgets failed to pass  Click here to see official results.


Doug Lary – now a Certified Moderator

20140430 Certified Moderator Doug Lary3rd Registrar of Voters candidate Doug Lary along with current Registrar Paulann Lescoe, BOF member Anita Sebestyen, Susan Bucklin, and others spent several hours on-line with training materials and quizes, and then a full day hands on training course and exam April 26th in Middletown.  Many from the class will be involved in this year’s voting at the Windham budget referendum.

2014 Certified Moderator Training Douglas Lary