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Campaign Finance

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Two selectmen spent more than $5,000 apiece to get reelected last fall

  Two incumbent selectmen spent more than $5,000 to get reelected last fall. Veteran Selectman Debra C. Panettaspent $5,636 to lead the field of 10 candidates vying for the five board seats in the Nov. 2 election. The 2,121 votes she received was second-best among the candidates, earning her the vice-chair seat for the two-year term.Selectman Jeffrey V. Cicolini, who finished third in the selectmen’s race with 1,760 votes, spent $5,243 on his race – including $1,143 during the final week of the campaign.

  Overall, the 10 selectman candidates spent an aggregate of $18,466 on last year’s election in their respective campaigns, according to a review of the Campaign Finance Reports documents posted on the Town of Saugus website (https://www.saugus-ma.gov/town-clerk/pages/campaign-finance-reports).

  Spending may have had some influence on the election. The top three spenders finished among the top three vote-getters. And the four candidates who spent the least were among the bottom three vote-getters.

  Board of Selectmen Chair Anthony W. Cogliano, Sr., received 2,446 votes to top the field of candidates for the second-straight town election. He did all of his spending during the final week of the campaign – $1,876 – and finished third overall in campaign expenditures in the selectmen’s race.

  With eight days left before the election, the 10 candidates had already spent an aggregate of $15,447 on post cards to voters, postage, newspaper ads and political signs, according to the campaign finance reports. Cogliano and Cicolini were the only candidates who spent money on their campaigns during the final week before the election – spending a combined $3,019.

  Here’s how the other candidates spent on their respective campaigns:

  Saugus Police Officer Domenic Montano, who finished seventh in the selectmen’s race with 1,255 votes, spent $1,041 on his campaign.

  Selectman Corinne R. Riley, who finished fourth (1,715 votes) in her reelection bid, spent $1,004 on postcards.

  Selectman Michael J. Serino, who finished fifth (1,711 votes) in getting reelected to another term, spent $964 on campaign-related expenses.

  Candidate Leo M. Fonseca, Jr., who finished 10th in the selectmen’s race with 727 votes, spent $943 on his campaign flyers and yard signs.

  Saugus Animal Control Officer Darren McCullough, who finished eighth among selectmen (1,196 votes), spent $601 in campaign-related expenses.

  Former Saugus School Committee Member Elizabeth Marchese, who finished sixth among selectmen candidates with 1,313 votes, spent $587 on her campaign.

  Former Saugus Animal Control Officer Harold Young, who finished 9th in the selectmen’s race with 879 votes, spent $573 on his campaign.

Editor’s Note: The official vote totals and campaign expenditures were obtained from reports posted by the Town Clerk’s Office on The Town of Saugus website.

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