November vote to replace Monaghan-Derrig on School Board expected in Cape Elizabeth

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CAPE ELIZABETH — Newly elected state Rep. Kim Monaghan-Derrig submitted her School Board resignation on Tuesday, in time to allow a special election Nov. 8 to fill the seat.

Potential candidates for the unexpired portion of her term, and for other elected offices on the November local ballot, have until Sept. 9 to gather and return nomination papers.

Monaghan-Derrig, a Democrat, was elected to the School Board last November. She then ran a successful special-election campaign against Republican Nancy Thompson and was elected on Aug. 16 to the House District 121 seat vacated in May when Cynthia Dill was elected to the state Senate.

The School Board voted 5-0 on Tuesday, Aug. 23, to allow Monaghan-Derrig to remain in office until December, when a newly elected board member can fill the vacancy.

Monaghan-Derrig said she will continue to juggle the local and state offices until a new board member is seated.

“I am committed to doing whatever is in the best interest of the town and the board,” she said Wednesday. “I wish I was able to do both, because I love serving on the School Board. It is a great group of members and I truly enjoyed my time with them.”

Superintendent of Schools Meredith Nadeau said the board accepted Monaghan-Derrig’s resignation effective the first week of December and called for a special election, to be held during the regular November municipal election, to complete her unexpired term.

“I appreciate Ms. Monaghan-Derrig’s service to the school district and community and her willingness to serve until after the election,” she said in an e-mail Wednesday. “We wish her well in her continued public service endeavors.”

The Town Council is expected to add Monaghan-Derrig’s unexpired School Board term to the Nov. 8 municipal ballot in a special meeting Thursday, Aug. 25.

Town Clerk Debra Lane said the Town Charter dictates that when there is a vacancy on the School Board within six months of a regular municipal election, the board can call a special election to fill that vacancy. The charter also states that nomination papers have to be filed with the town clerk by the 60th day prior to the election day.

Lane said town officials examined Maine statutes and discovered that even though nomination papers have to be available 40 days before the filing deadline, the council may shorten that time period to 10 days.

Nomination papers for the remaining two years of Monaghan-Derrig’s term on the School Board will be available on Friday, Aug. 26, Lane said.

Papers are also available for two other seats on the School Board, now held by Kathy Ray and Mary Townsend. Lane said no one had taken out papers for the School Board as of Wednesday. 

But Ray has taken out and returned papers for one of the Town Council seats available. The seats are held by Chairman David Sherman and Councilor Anne Swift-Kayatta.

Sherman has also returned his papers, and Swift-Kayatta has taken them out, but not returned them, Lane said.

All papers are due back to the Town Hall by 4 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or Follow her on Twitter: @amy_k_anderson