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- The Forecaster
SOUTH PORTLAND — Mayor Linda Cohen will not seek re-election to the City Council in November.
Cohen’s announcement came as nomination papers become available next week in the city, Scarborough and Cape Elizabeth for candidates in the Nov. 6 municipal elections.
Cohen has represented South Portland’s District 4 for two three-year terms and is completing her second one-year term as mayor.
“For the last 31 plus years, I have served the city of South Portland in some fashion, from employee to board member to city councilor/mayor,” she said in an email. “Additionally, I have served in other government roles throughout local and state government. The time has come for me to step back, reclaim my life and give others the opportunity to serve this great city.”
The District 3 seat, held by Councilor Eben Rose, is also up for election. Rose could not be reached about whether he will seek another three-year term.
Three School Board seats will be on the ballot: Districts 3, 4 and 5, represented respectively by Richard Matthews, Vice Chairman Matthew Perkins, and Elyse Chiland Tipton.
Tipton, who served the last two of an unexpired three-year term, said she will seek re-election. Mathews and Perkins could not be reached.
Nomination papers in South Portland are available Monday, July 30, and must be returned by Sept. 7. City Council and School Board candidates must collect 100 signatures of registered voters to be on the ballot.
Five of seven seats on the Scarborough School Board are up for election, following the recall of three board members in May.
Two seats are for one year, to complete the unexpired terms of recalled members Cari Lyford and Jodi Shea. A three-year term to succeed Donna Beeley, who was recalled and whose term is expiring, is also on the ballot.
Chairwoman Mary Starr’s term is up this year, and long-time board member Jackie Perry is termed out.
Starr said via email Tuesday she is still considering her options. “I certainly hope that we will have many quality candidates that choose to run and serve our school district,” she said.
Two Town Council seats are also on the November ballot. They are held by Councilors Robert Rowan and Christopher J. Caiazzo.
Rowan said Wednesday he has not decided whether to seek another term on the council.
Caiazzo is not seeking re-election because he is the Democratic Party candidate in House District 28, where he will oppose Republican Bradbury Blake. The seat is open because state Rep. Heather Sirocki, a Scarborough Republican, is termed out.
Two three-year seats on the Sanitary District Board of Trustees, now held now by Nick Ricco and Ben Viola, are on the municipal ballot, along with a five-year term on the Portland Water District Board of Trustees, now held by Seth Garrison, which is a five-year term, is also up for election.
Nomination papers will be available Wednesday, Aug. 1, and must be returned by Sept. 5. Candidates must collect at least 25 signatures to be on the ballot, Town Clerk Tody Justice said.
Three seats on the Cape Elizabeth Town Council and three on the School Board are up for election.
On the council, seats now held by Chairwoman Jessica Sullivan and Councilors Jamie Garvin and Sara Lennon are up for election. All three last week said they have not decided whether they’ll seek re-election.
On the School Board, terms are expiring for John Voltz, Heather Altenburg and Vice Chairwoman Elizabeth Scifres.
Nomination papers can be picked up at the town clerk’s office starting Monday, July 30 and must be returned by 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7.
Candidates must submit signatures from 25-100 registered voters to get on the ballot.
South Portland Mayor Linda Cohen