Reporter Jackie Majerus' story about the treasurer's race:
In a stunning upset, Republican challenger Rose Parenti won the city treasurer’s office over incumbent Democrat Bill Veits.
“I'm quite humbled by the amount of support I received,” Parenti told the crowd at the GOP's victory party.
“What can I say?” said Veits. “The voters have spoken. I thank them for the last two years as city treasurer. I really enjoyed it. Good luck to Rose. May she have a great two years.”
Parenti, who has been active with local Republicans for years, owns Computer Development on Riverside Avenue.
As treasurer, she said, she will “fulfill the duties of the office to the best of my ability.”
The two candidates differed on a proposal to use excess city pension money to cover health care costs of municipal retirees, a move the unions vigorously opposed.
Parenti vowed to fight the proposal, while Veits sided with those who wanted to look into the possibility.
Veits said that vote “might have been” what cost him the election.
“I’m still in favor of it,” said Veits. “I don’t have any regrets.”
Mayor Art Ward called Veits' defeat “a great loss to the treasurer's office.”
Veits, who had thought absentee ballots might make a difference in a close treasurer’s race, learned from a reporter that unofficial final results showed Parenti with 4,199 votes to 3,974 for Veits in an unofficial tally.
“So she beat me,” he said.
Veits, who said he was “somewhat surprised” at the election results, didn’t rule out another run in the future.
A part-time post, the treasurer’s job pays $4,000 annually. The treasurer oversees a professional staff at City Hall and also serves as a trustee of the city’s retirement funds.
Veits, a self-employed tax preparer and the longtime chairman of the Bristol Planning Commission, won the treasurer’s office in 2007 after former Patti Ewen decided not to seek a ninth term.
Update: As an aside, there hasn't been a Republican treasurer since Phyllis Spooner held the post for a single term back in the 1980s.
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