JPNC election results announced

John Ruch

All of the official candidates, as well as two write-ins, in the July 12 Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council (JPNC) election won their seats.

At 332 total votes, turnout was up about 25 percent over the last election in 2005. It was still below the 2003 record of about 1,100 voters. Ombudspeople disqualified 16 votes.

The election appeared to have problems with some unstaffed polling places. J.P. Licks, one of the official polls, had no one collecting votes on the morning of the election. Outgoing JPNC chair Nelson Arroyo, who served as an election ombudsperson, told the Gazette at that time that J.P. Licks was an “afternoon poll” only, but apparently that information had not been previously announced.

The winning candidates, with their total votes, include:

At Large: Felix G. Arroyo (276); Pam Bender (176); Jesús Gerena (189); Mark Pedulla (177); and Michael Reiskind (175).

Area A (Hyde/Jackson/Egleston squares): Victor Martinez (38) and Sol Tangvik (31).

Area B (Stonybrook/Parkside/Brookside/Forest Hills): Steven Backman (84); David Baron (67); Francesca Fordiani (106); Carlos Icaza (72); and Yawu Miller (83).

Area C (Pondside/Jamaica Hills/Forest Hill): Red Burrows (40); Andrea Howley (71); Kevin Leary (63); and Stephen Lussier (57).

Among the failed write-in candidates who drew relatively significant vote totals were Sunnyside Neighborhood Association president Edmund Cape and tree activist Kathy Holland.

The JPNC typically chooses officers at its meeting following the election. The next meeting is scheduled for July 24 at Curtis Hall. [See JP Agenda.]

There were not enough elected candidates to fill all of the JPNC’s 20 seats. The JPNC typically fills vacant seats by appointing candidates who present themselves at one of the meetings.

The JPNC also has committees open to volunteer community members.

The JPNC was one of several neighborhood councils established by the city in the 1980s to give greater input on community issues. Members are elected but unpaid. The JPNC has been particularly influential in recent years on zoning, licensing and housing issues, and as a community forum for various major controversies.

David Taber contributed to this article.

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