Incumbent Selectman to face challenger after candidate changes mind

Feb 7, 2018

Selectman Alan Slavin is no longer running unopposed in the April 3 town election. Marc Bianco, who had been gathering nomination signatures for a second, open seat, intends to challenge the two-term incumbent.

“I think change is good,” said Bianco, a resident for the past 25 years and current member of the Planning Board.

Bianco, along with candidates Mary Bruce and Faith Berry, had taken out nomination papers for the seat previously held by Selectman Judy Whiteside. In January, Whiteside abruptly announced her resignation for unspecified personal reasons. Selectmen terms are for three years, but due to the resignation, whoever wins Whiteside’s former seat will serve two years.

Candidates must secure the signatures of 50 registered voters to run. Bianco said he had 90 signatures and was prepared to make his candidacy official when he changed his mind.

While gathering signatures, Bianco said he met many voters who wanted him to serve for three years. He said voters should have a choice, too.

“I have a personal feeling that no one should run unopposed,” he said.

Bianco runs United Alliance Services, a consulting firm focused on workplace safety. For Bianco, planning for the future is important if elected. “We need to take the 25,000-foot view, so to speak,” said Bianco. “And see where the town is going not only tomorrow, but ten years from now.”

By withdrawing his name for the two-year seat, Bianco had to take out new nomination papers and gather the required 50 signatures again. He said he’s confident he’ll secure those signatures before Feb. 13, the deadline to return papers in order to make the ballot.

The last day to pick up nomination papers in the Town Clerk’s office is Feb. 9.