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Stonington: Haberek holds off challenge

By Joe Wojtas

Publication: theday.com

Published November 05. 2013 10:00PM   Updated November 06. 2013 6:54PM

Stonington — No tax increases and leadership during storms helped incumbent Democratic First Selectman Ed Haberek narrowly win a fourth term Tuesday.

Haberek defeated Republican Selectwoman Glee McAnanly by a vote of 2,430-2,385.

McAnanly was re-elected to the Board of Selectmen along with Democratic incumbent George Crouse. Former Republican Selectman William Brown was the unsuccessful candidate for the board.

After the results were announced in Town Hall, a relieved Haberek hugged his wife, daughter and supporters. "It's a great night. I appreciate the support of the voters, my family and friends. I feel very blessed," Haberek said, adding he looks forward to continuing his work for the town.

Before going over to shake McAnanly's hand, Haberek said this was a tough election because he was busy with town projects and did not have a lot of time to campaign.

McAnanly said she would not have done anything differently.

"I feel like we ran a very good campaign. I said I wanted to live with what happened on the campaign trail, and I've done that," she said.

At the District 1 polls at the borough firehouse Tuesday, Haberek supporters said it was budgets with little or no tax increase under Haberek's tenure and his leadership during storms that had them voting for him.

"I like Ed because he's been there for me over and over again when I have a problem," said one Mystic businessman.

Voter Kevin Slocum said that while he has not been happy with everything Haberek has done and wishes he could have accomplished more in the area of economic development, he said Haberek has done a good job keeping the tax rate down.

During the campaign Haberek had to deal with the ongoing allegations by Tracy Swain of Pawcatuck that he sent her sexually graphic photos of himself using his town issued BlackBerry. Swain has sued the town and Haberek, who testified in a sworn deposition that he used his home computer to email Swain a pornographic image of another man that he had received as spam.

Some McAnanly voters mentioned that at the polls Tuesday. One borough woman said the allegations against Haberek are "absolutely disgusting" and "gross" and said she made it a point to come out and support McAnanly.

Despite Swain's lawsuit against Haberek and the town, McAnanly did not make the Swain case part of her campaign, saying she wanted to focus on her plan for the town.

Elected to the four seats on the Board of Education were incumbent Democrats Gail MacDonald and Alisa C. Morrison, along with incumbent Faith Leitner and Alexa Garvey, both Republicans. Democrat Terry Stefanski was the unsuccessful candidate. Democrat Paul Cravinho defeated incumbent Republican Martha Booker in the race for treasurer.

j.wojtas@theday.com

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