WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- In close contests, Susan Puddester and Christopher Kapiloff took seats on the Williamstown Planning Board on Tuesday. Jeffrey Thomas will join the Board of Selectmen and voters elected Jane Patton to a new term as selectman. Joseph Bergeron and Dan Caplinger will join the elementary-school committee.
Puddester, wife of the second-ranked administrator at Williams College, and Kapiloff, a Williamstown native and school safety-glass entrepreneur, won with 54.4% and 46.9% of the vote, respectively. Puddester defeated Sarah Gardner, who got 45.6% of the vote in a two-way race with Puddester for one seat. Gardner is a Williams environmental-science professor and planning expert. She has been among a three-vote majority on the Planning Board seeking to limit the physical size of a proposed 120-unit hotel at Waubeeka Golf Links sought by Michael Deep.
Kapiloff grew up in a house adjacent to the hotel site, and has been generally supportive. Neither Kapiloff nor Puddester have formal planning training. Kapiloff, with 46.9% of the vote, overcame Anne Hogeland (42.1%), an attorney with years of service on various town boards, who lives in South Williamstown and had also sought to limit the square footage of the hotel proposal. Kapiloff also overcame Bruce MacDonald, a real-estate developer, who got 7.1% of the vote in the three-way race for the second Planning Board seat.
The elementary-school contest was a five-way race for two seats. Bergeron garnered 28.9% of the vote and Caplinger 20.5%.
Here are the results, as tallied and read by Town Clerk Mary Kennedy (click on the photos to rotate and enlarge for reading).