NEWBURYPORT — The window to submit nomination papers for the municipal election closed Tuesday afternoon, solidifying several contested races for City Council and School Committee seats.
Nomination papers needed to be returned to the city clerk's office by 5 p.m. with at least 50 signatures from registered Newburyport voters. The election is Nov. 5.
The ballot will not feature a mayoral race. Mayor Donna Holaday is in the middle of her fourth term, which expires in 2021. All City Council seats are for two years.
Because three candidates filed nomination papers for the Ward 6 council seat, there will be a preliminary election in that ward Sept. 17 to narrow the field to two candidates.
Sarah Hall of 8 Arthur Welch Drive, Mary E. Zinck of 6 Laurel Road, and Byron J. Lane of 14 Hart Road are all running for the Ward 6 seat now held by Thomas O'Brien, who announced earlier this month that he would not seek re-election.
Notably absent from the list of candidates is Councilor at-large Gregory Earls, who never took out nomination papers.
Papers for City Council seats were taken out by Clete Kijek in Ward 4 and Anthony Pettigrew in Ward 5, neither of whom returned them. Also, papers were never returned by School Committee member Nicholas B. deKanter or School Committee hopeful Richard M. Salus.
Ward 1 Councilor Sharif Zeid, Ward 2 Councilor Jared Eigerman and Ward 3 Councilor Heather Shand are all running unopposed for re-election. Newcomers Christine Elizabeth Wallace of 474 Merrimac St. and James J. McCauley of 27 Storeybrooke Drive are both unopposed in the race for Ward 4 and Ward 5 council seats, respectively.
Competing for five councilor at-large seats in November will be incumbents Barry Connell, Bruce Vogel, Joseph Devlin and Afroz Khan along with challengers Charles Tontar, Robert Germinara of 2 Ashland St. and Paul C. O'Brien of 483B Merrimac St. Tontar is currently Ward 4 councilor but filed papers in the at-large race.
Competing for three open four-year School Committee seats will be incumbents Sean R. Reardon and Bruce Menin, and challengers Eliza J. Bobek of 92 Prospect St. and Sheila Reardon Spalding of 10 Fair St.
The three other School Committee members — Steven Cole, David Hochheiser and Brian Callahan — are in the middle of serving four-year terms and are not up for re-election until 2021.
Staff writer Jack Shea covers Newburyport City Hall. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 978-961-3154. Follow him on Twitter @iamjackshea.
Editor's note: This story corrects an earlier version which incorrectly characterized Charles Tontar as an incumbent for office.
This story also corrects Ward 6 council candidate Mary E. Zinck's address, which was incorrect in an earlier version.