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Saturday, June 15, 2013

Nashua aldermen request special election to replace state representative seat

Nashua aldermen have put through plans to set up a special election, possibly in the fall, for a local state representative’s seat that has been left vacant.

Democratic Rep. Roland LaPlante, one of three representatives serving Ward 8, officially announced his plans to resign in February, citing health reasons. The 79-year-old lawmaker served as a representative more than 30 years ago, then ran again in 2008. On his third go, he was elected to office in November 2012. ...

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Nashua aldermen have put through plans to set up a special election, possibly in the fall, for a local state representative’s seat that has been left vacant.

Democratic Rep. Roland LaPlante, one of three representatives serving Ward 8, officially announced his plans to resign in February, citing health reasons. The 79-year-old lawmaker served as a representative more than 30 years ago, then ran again in 2008. On his third go, he was elected to office in November 2012.

His announcement came just days after a special election was held to replace Stacie Laughton, who made history as the first transgendered person to win a seat in the state Legislature, but who gave up the job Nov. 29 on a cable access show after news surfaced that she had committed several felonies while living in Laconia under the name Barry Charles Laughton Jr.

Officials at that time estimated that special elections cost about $2,000, but one to replace LaPlante may cost double that.

Tuesday evening, the Board of Aldermen forwarded on legislation for the Executive Council to consider regarding a request for such an election, which is standard procedure. The city clerk’s office staff said they’re planning for the special election to coincide with the municipal elections on Nov. 5, although that must be reviewed at the state level.

Three aldermen-at-large seats are up in Nashua this fall – Mark Cookson’s, Barbara Pressly’s and David Deane’s – as well as all of the ward aldermen, who serve for two years.

The filing period will start Aug. 27, and petitions for office are available online. Click on “City Government,” “Departments,” “City Clerk’s Office” and “Elections.”

Board of Education positions will also be listed, but the mayor’s post won’t be up until 2015.

– SAMANTHA ALLEN