The early voting drop box outside Bangor City Hall is pictured Oct. 5, 2020. Credit: Natalie Williams / BDN

Seven Bangor residents have lined up to run for City Council this fall, and five have qualified to run for school committee, setting up competitive races for the open seats on both panels.

Three seats are up for grabs on the Bangor City Council and two on the Bangor School Committee. Friday afternoon was the deadline for candidates to submit the 100 or more signatures from Bangor voters required to run.

This year’s field is about the size of last year’s, when eight candidates ran for the City Council and four for the school committee.

The three City Council seats up for a vote are currently held by councilors Susan Hawes, Sarah Nichols and Gretchen Schaefer. Hawes and Schaefer are running for reelection while Nichols, who was first elected in 2015, is not.

Nichols said she decided not to run because she wouldn’t have been able to devote as much time to the position, especially after being accepted into a primarily online public administration master’s degree program at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts.

“I will never rule out running again in the future,” Nichols said. “But, for now, I am stepping aside for someone new to continue this work going forward.”

The two open school committee seats are held by Warren Caruso — who isn’t running again after more than a decade on the committee — and a vacant seat formerly held by John Hiatt. Hiatt initially planned to run for reelection but resigned from the school committee last month after two arrests.

Marlene Brochu, James Butler Jr., Joseph Leonard, Free Martin and Dina Yacoubagha will join Hawes and Schaefer on the ballot for City Council. The top three candidates will serve three-year terms.

Leonard and Yacoubagha both ran unsuccessful campaigns for City Council last year. 

Candidates for the school committee are Eric Crawley, Sara Luciano, Imke Schessler-Jandreau, Carrie Smith and Ben Sprague. The top two vote getters will serve three-year terms.

Smith also ran for school board last year

Sprague served nine years on the Bangor City Council until last year.

The election takes place Nov. 2.