Vecchia Elected Council Pres by 11 Votes:Turco says He Will File for Recount

By Sue Ellen Woodcock

Town Council President candidates Ron Vecchia and Jeff Turco are shown on election day. Vecchia won by eleven votes and a recount is expected.

It looks like the race for Town Council President will go to to a recount with an 11-vote difference between the two candidates.

Attorney Jeff Turco earned 1,980 votes and School Committee member and apparent winner Ron Vecchia gained 1,991 votes in one of the closest Winthrop elections in recent memory. A third candidate for council president, Councilor Rich Boyajian tallied 584 votes definitely adding to the closeness of the race.

“I am calling for a recount,” Turco said, adding that he called to congratulate Vecchia. “It was a good clean race, and I’m honored the people of Winthrop came out to vote.”

Turco said a recount is owed to the people who voted.

Vecchia agreed on the tenor of the race.

“We knew it would be close race,” Vecchia said. “We kept it clean and congratulated each other.”

He noted that a three-person race did move around some votes and made a difference.

Turco has to file a petition with 10 signatures from each precinct with the town clerk by 5 p.m. next Friday, Nov. 17. The there are several procedures until a date is set for the recount.

One of the biggest tasks for the next council president will be appointing the next town manager.

In the School Committee race for three seats, incumbent Brian Perrin topped the ticket with 2,721 votes. Newcomer James Fabiano had 2,686 votes. Newcomer Jen Powell earned 2,527 votes. Newcomer John Lyons took 2,054 votes but fell short of making the cut.

In the councilor at-large race, Mike Lucerto earned 2,379 votes over candidate Rob DeMarco who earned 1,799 votes.

In the library-trustee race for three seats, Gillian Teixeira topped the ticket with 3,222 votes. Virginia Wallace earned 3,093 and Betty Peabody drew 3,042 votes.

In the race for Winthrop Housing Authority, voters were asked to fill two seats. Peter Gill topped the ticket with 2,595 votes, Fred Silck garnered 2,045. Candidates who also showed well were Marie Matarazzo with 1,173 votes; Peter Burke Jr. with 1,095 votes and Vincent Wisniewski Jr. with 357 votes.

In the council precinct races, Precinct 1 newcomer Michael McDuffee ran uncontested and earned 665 votes.

In Precinct 3, former Board of Health Chairman Nick LoConte also ran unopposed and earned 466 votes.

In the contested Precinct 5 race, rookie council member Peter Christopher kept his seat with 667 votes over challenger Stephen Koutalakis who earned 248 votes.

Town Clerk Carla Vitale said voter turnout before the polls closed seemed to be higher than the local election of 2015. She noted that 4,596 people came out to vote on Tuesday out of 12,318 registered voters in Winthrop, or roughly 37 percent.

Results of the election are posted on the town website and there is a link on the town clerk’s Facebook entry.

Vitale said she would like to acknowledge all the people that worked together to make election day a safe, organized and well-executed election.

“Every own department pitched in to help and we look forward to working with our newly elected officials in January,”

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