Secretary of state investigation on F...

Secretary of state investigation on Fairhaven elections

Posted in the Massachusetts Forum

Jack Kelly

Jamestown, RI

#1 Apr 17, 2013

Secretary of state opens investigation on Fairhaven elections

FAIRHAVEN — Secretary of State William Galvin’s office has opened an investigation into the April 1 town election.

A letter sent to Town Clerk Eileen Lowney written by Michelle Tassinari, director and legal counsel to the secretary of state’s election division, makes four allegations against the town, including that poll workers did not make sure the number of ballots matched the number of voters at each polling station.
Jack Kelly

Jamestown, RI

#3 May 24, 2013

Hearing on Fairhaven Board of Health election set for next weekText Size: A | A | A
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By Ariel Wittenberg
[email protected]
May 23, 2013 12:00 AMPopular Today
Police question chiropractor about discovery of bicycle, backpackPedestrian seriously injuried in New Bedford accidentPolice probe death of pedestrian in WarehamWell-known Onset homeless woman killed in Cranberry Highway accidentNew Bedford residence struck by gunfire; third drive-by in three nightsNew Bedford man assaulted in South End2 charged in shooting, high-speed chase in New BedfordNEW BEDFORD — Seeking a speedy resolution, Superior Court Judge Robert Kane scheduled a hearing in the Fairhaven Board of Health election case for May 31.

At a preliminary hearing Wednesday, Kane acknowledged that the hearing date would put lawyers for the two candidates involved on a "tight schedule," but said he "understood the impulse" that the case should be resolved as soon as possible. The time has not been announced.

Last week, John Wethington filed a motion with the court asking it to throw out April's much-disputed election results and compel a new Board of Health election.

Wethington challenged incumbent Peter DeTerra in April and was erroneously sworn in on election night before all of the votes had been counted. Later vote tallies, including a recount that revealed multiple errors in the election process, put DeTerra ahead by one vote.

Since the recount, DeTerra has chaired three meetings of the Board of Health.

Before the May 31 hearing, attorneys for Wethington and DeTerra will have to present Kane with a list of "agreed-upon facts" of the case, as well as points of dispute, witness lists and proposed resolutions to the case.

On Wednesday, Wethington's attorney, Ann DeNardis, said it was "great news that the judge recognizes that time is of the essence and that we will have a full hearing as soon as possible."

For his part, DeTerra's attorney, John Markey Jr., said he hoped the outcome of the next hearing would not be determined by what he called "innocent errors of Fairhaven poll workers."

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