By SCOTT JACKSON
James Devine and Joel Buenaventura were the top two vote getters in the four-person preliminary election for the vacant Ward 4 seat on the Quincy City Council and will go head to head in next month’s final election.
Devine finished first and Buenaventura second in Tuesday’s preliminary contest. Devine finished with 318 votes, 42.18 percent of all votes cast. Buenaventura garnered 234 votes or 31.03 percent of the total vote.
Devine was the top vote getter in four of the ward’s five precincts in the preliminary election and Buenaventura finished second in each of those precincts. The exception was Precinct 4, where Buenaventura came in first and Devine was second.
Those two candidates will face each other in the final special election on Tuesday, Feb. 7. The winner of that contest will be able to serve the remainder of the council term, which expires at the end of the year, and could run for a full two-year term in November’s municipal election.
Coming in third and fourth in the preliminary contest were Matthew Lyons and Sharon Cintolo, respectively. Lyons polled 149 votes (19.76 percent) and Cintolo 53 votes (7.03 percent). Lyons came in third in all five precincts and Cintolo placed fourth in each of them.
Turnout in the preliminary election was 6.83 percent, with 756 of the ward’s 11,068 registered voters casting ballots.
Early voting, both in-person and by mail, will be available for the final election as they were for the preliminary contest.
In-person early voting will take place at the office of the city’s election department, which is located on the second floor of the glass city hall annex building at 1305 Hancock St. For the final election, early voting will take place there from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28, and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from Monday, Jan. 30, to Friday, Feb. 3.
The last day to apply to vote by mail in the final election is 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 31. Applications can be obtained online at quincyma.gov or by calling the election department at 617-376-1144.
Absentee balloting will also take place at the office of the election department. Residents who wish to vote absentee may do so daily between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., once ballots are available. Absentee balloting ends at noon on Monday, Feb. 6. Voters who would like an absentee ballot mailed to them, can call the election department or visit the city website.
The deadline to register to vote in the final election is 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28.
The special election is being held to fill the seat vacated by Brian Palmucci, who resigned in the fall upon his appointment to a judgeship. Palmucci was first elected in 2009 and had been the longest-serving incumbent councillor at the time of his departure.