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March 12. 2013 11:25PM

New library proposal nixed in Epping

EPPING - Voters on Tuesday rejected plans to build a new library and purchase water-rich land, and ousted longtime Selectman Dianne Gilbert, who has spent years fighting to control spending.

The proposed $2.3 million public library failed (527-962) as did a $2.5 million plan (860-608) to buy about 75 acres of land with five existing wells that could provide a future water source for the town. The land purchase needed 881 votes to pass. Voters have defeated similar land purchase proposals in the past.

Voters defeated a plan to hire a school resource officer (697-804) but passed the $6.4 million town budget (1,041-437).

They also OK'd $181,246 in new playground equipment at the elementary school but rejected the school budget (697-777). The school will operate with a $17.2 million default budget.

Voters decided several hotly contested races as well.

While Selectman Robert Jordan (677) was elected to another three-year term, Dianne Gilbert (639) lost her bid to keep her seat. Tom Dwyer Jr. (736) was the top vote-getter, earning a second seat on the board. Matthew Killen (638) earned the least votes.

Erika Robinson was also elected new town clerk and tax collector, replacing retiring clerk Linda Foley. Robinson (961) beat Grace Lavoie (386) in the clerk's race. She also grabbed the tax collector's position, earning 734 votes and beating Lavoie (334) and Robin O'Day (296).

On the school side, David Mylott (693) won reelection to the school board in a seven-way race for two open seats. Chris Sousa (621) took the second seat, ousting incumbent Jeff Harris (132). Votes for the remaining candidates were Dianne Gilbert (469), Karen Falcone (373), Robin O'Day (286), and Susan Kimball (219).

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