Election officials in Groton City said the voter turnout has been good so far today, with about 75 people casting ballots at the municipal building by 8 a.m.
Ken Semeraro, the moderator, said the initial morning rush was busier than it has been in local elections in years past.
Several candidates who stood in front of the building and voters said the fact that both parties fielded a full slate of candidates may be drawing more people to the polls.
Democratic incumbent Marian Galbraith faces a challenge from Republican Town Councilor James Streeter in the mayor’s race. Both parties have endorsed candidates for the six council seats. City Republicans offered one candidate in the last election.
“This is the first time in several years that both parties have a full slate,” Streeter said. “It brings out a lot of people.”
Democratic council candidates Andy Ilvento and Gina Fafard said they were encouraged by the level of interest in the election, and expected the polls to be busier at the end of the work day.
Kate Colello, a local resident, said as she was leaving the municipal building that she voted because “it’s exciting to have two great candidates for mayor, who are committed to the city.”
Stanley Mathis, another voter, said he thinks it’s important to vote in every election because “that’s how we can change things.”
And Elizabeth Duarte said she voted because “it’s the only way to have a say with what is going to happen in our everyday lives.”
The Republican council candidates are incumbent Keith Hedrick along with Michael Boucher, Jay Dempsey, Jackie Massett, Kevin Trejo and Robert Zuliani.
The Democratic candidates are incumbents Larry Gerrish, Ilvento and William Jervis along with Lori Hesch, Stephen Sheffield and Fafard.
Deputy Mayor Celeste Duffy and council member David Hale, both Democrats, are not seeking re-election. City Clerk Deb Patrick is running unopposed.