No Preliminary Election; Fiorentini Runs Unopposed

Haverhill City Clerk Linda L. Koutoulas.

(Editor’s note: This story was prepared prior to the withdrawal of Christopher C. Goudreault Wednesday from the city council ballot.)

There will be no city preliminary election in September.

Haverhill City Council Vice President Robert H. Scatamacchia.

Haverhill City Council Vice President Robert H. Scatamacchia.

As of Tuesday’s 5 p.m. deadline for submitting completed nomination papers, there is only one candidate for mayor, 16 for city council and six for school committee. More than twice the number of candidates for any office is required for a municipal preliminary election to take place. City Council Vice President Robert H. Scatamacchia is not seeking re-election. The veteran councilor, under indictment for allegedly stealing $72,000 in funeral prepayment money and pocketing $200,000 in other business funds, did not return nomination papers.

Haverhill City Clerk Linda L. Koutoulas said no preliminary election means savings for taxpayers.

“I’m estimating about $25,000. That’s including all the rentals for the moving, supplies, the poll workers, trainings, the police, the overtime for some city employees who help out. So, we figure about $25,000 for an election,” She said.

Fiorentini Unopposed for Seventh Term

Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini.

Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini.

Without the Sept. 22 preliminary election, neither candidates nor voters will have concrete clues about the outcome of city council and school committee races. Mayor James J. Fiorentini will still occupy the corner office in January since his only competitor, Sherwin R. Theodore, 67 Washington St., did not return nomination papers. In an online post to supporters prior to the filing deadline, Fiorentini said he would still campaign.

“Whether he returns the papers or not, I intend to run a campaign this fall,” said Fiorentini, who is seeking an unprecedented seventh, two-year term. “I intend to run a different campaign this year. Traditionally, I have not had coffee hours or meet and greets at supporters homes. This year, I would like to do that. I would like to have meetings in neighborhood homes to discuss neighborhood issues, the progress we have made and the challenges we face.”

Besides Scatamacchia, Raul Diaz chose not to return papers. City council candidates expected to appear on the Tuesday, Nov. 3, ballot are incumbents Melinda E. Barrett, Colin F. LePage, William J. Macek, Michael S. McGonagle, John A. Michitson, Mary Ellen Daly O’Brien, Thomas Sullivan and William H. Ryan. Challengers are former councilors David E. Hall, Michael Hart and Kenneth E. Quimby Jr. and School Committeeman Joseph J. Bevilacqua, Katrina Everett, Christopher C. Goudreault, Fred A. Simmons and Andy Vargas.

Fitzgerald Declines Another School Committee Run

Former Haverhill School Committeewoman Kerry Fitzgerald.

Former Haverhill School Committeewoman Kerry Fitzgerald.

Former School Committeewoman Kerry Fitzgerald, who had taken out papers in June, declined to return them Tuesday.

In a message to supporters late Tuesday afternoon, Fitzgerald said, “…after speaking with several local public officials and elected officials I remembered the political climate in Haverhill and decided that it wasn’t something I wanted to deal with again.”

Three of the school committee’s six seats are up for election. Two-term Committeewoman Susan D. Danehy is not seeking re-election. Incumbents are Scott W. Wood Jr. and Shaun P. Toohey. Others expected to be appear on the November ballot include Pamela Conte; Gail M. Sullivan, who fell short by only 51 votes during her first run in 2013; former City Councilor Sven A. Amirian; and newcomer Michael Shurman.

WHAV will provide additional coverage during Wednesday’s newscasts.

8 thoughts on “No Preliminary Election; Fiorentini Runs Unopposed

  1. Amirian? The guy who quit the Council, almost put the Chamber out of Business, quit that and has no stake in the public school. We get it Amirian, you need the money and health insurance.

  2. Jack said “If I wasn’t so old and tired, I would have given him a go…”

    So this answers a couple of questions about Jack.

    1st. We’ve known for a while that he’s bitter. You can see it in his posts. Now we know he’s old. Put it together and we have a bitter old man that has nothing nice to say about anybody or anything. Someday you’ll see him standing in Gar Park screaming obscenities at a tree. He’ll claim that the tree started it.

    2nd. We know now he’s makes excuses so he can be a quitter. News flash, Jack. Many of us are old and many of us are tired. Some of us are both old and tired, just like you. Running for mayor, however, can be hard or it can be easy, Jim F walks 1000 miles and knocks on 10,000 doors (hard). Jack, you can take your papers out and your whole campaign can be writing one letter to the citizens of Haverhill detailing who the Mayor is ‘buying off’ (easy).

    But now we know you would’a but I couldn’t so I did’nt.

    • Would you believe Jack doesn’t even live in Haverhill? The next solution he offers will be the first. I’m not huge fan of the Mayor, but I can see his pros along with his cons unlike Jackie.

  3. C’mon Jack, what’s being kept from the residents? Tearing down Woolworth’s? Rehabbing rotting shoe shops? Bringing ULowell bucks to Haverhill?

    C’mon Jack, fill us in!

  4. So it seems that all those folks, like the person who ran on stickers last time, are happy with the Mayor to the point they won’t run against him. Maybe it was the Mayor “buying off” his competition ? Amazing how people can cave into the pressure with a little help from the Mayors’ friends. If I wasn’t so old and tired, I would have given him a go. If even just to expose all of the stuff he keeps hidden from the residents. I think we should name his tenure as ” The Greatest Snow Job on Earth”.

    • Who in their right mind would want the job?

      Haverhill is a financial disaster and not in control of its own destiny. If a person were to run opposite what Rep. Brian Dempsey says or thinks, he can single-handedly sink your administration by pulling the money he legally steals from other communities as Chair of Ways & Means. Jimmy is a true Massachusetts Democrat with a sad history, and will go along with anything Dempsey says, even if it is harmful for The People of Haverhill. The city should have been put in receivership years ago based on it’s pension system and deficit financing bonds alone, but the fraud upon The People of this state must go on.