March 07, 2012BELMONT — As voters head to the polls in Belmont Tuesday, all eyes will be on the hotly contested race for a three-year term on the board of selectmen, which has drawn a field of three hopefuls, two of whom are no strangers to the inner workings of town government.
Long time resident George Condodemetraky is no stranger to Belmont town politics. When voters go to the polls on March 13, he will be seeking the opportunity to return once again to the Board of Selectmen, having served twice before, in the late '70's and early '80's.
Condodemetraky first came to Belmont in 1969, when he and his wife Susan drove from Panama to New Hampshire. They chose the area because they enjoyed the scenery, and felt it would be an ideal halfway point between his family in New York and hers in Canada. Since then, they have called Belmont home, and George has been an involved citizen in the community.
Condodemetraky is a graduate of New York University's School of Engineering. As an engineer, he has worked both locally and internationally in a wide array of projects, including many years as a consultant for the U.S. State Department in Laos.
"I built airports, roadways, docks, ammo depots — whatever they needed," he said.
Condodemetraky was later sent to Panama, where he designed and built a university.
Once he moved to New Hampshire, Condodemetraky began work with the N.H. Water Supply and Pollution Control Commission (now known as the Department of Environmental Services), and was the chief engineer on the Winnipesaukee River Basin Project.
"We did well with that," Condodemetraky said. "Belmont got the sewer system it needed, and the rest is history."
In 1978, Condodemtraky began a process that eventually gave Belmont control of water rights on the Winnipesaukee River, and as a result, a hydro electric power station was rebuilt and put back on line to generate electricity, he said.
During his term as a selectman in the 1980's, Condodemetraky helped create the sewer commission in Belmont. Among his other proud achievements was a citation he received from the governor in 1986 for saving the state $1 million through one of his engineering projects.
Since 1991, he has owned and operated GC Engineering and GC Enterprises, both family run businesses located in Belmont.
"I decided to run again because we have some serious problems in Belmont, and I don't see anyone doing anything about them," said Condodemetraky.
His basic concern surrounds a lack of planning, as he sees it, which could one day cost taxpayers a lot of money. One instance he uses to make his point is that without proper planning, large tracts of land could be bought by a developer. The addition of a few hundred new housing units in the town would then have to be absorbed by taxpayers.
"That would mean a lot more children who would be brought into the schools. Our school budget could soar from $20 million to $30 million in no time at all," Condodemetraky said.
Other concerns with town spending have prompted him to run for a third term, where he can roll up his sleeves and get to work on addressing issues Belmont faces not only today but may face in the future.
"It all comes back to good planning and keeping taxes affordable. That's what I want to do," he said.
After serving a term on the budget committee, Belmont native Ruth Mooney has decided to throw her hat in the ring for the March 13 elections, seeking a vacant seat on the board of selectmen.
Mooney, married to former selectman Mark Mooney, said she is her own person, with her own ideas, and brings life experiences in many areas, all of which she feels could be a benefit to town government.
Right out of high school, Mooney was hired as the private secretary to former Department of Safety commissioner Dick Flynn. After many years with Flynn at DOS, she changed careers and began working with the Trapper Brown Construction company out of Plymouth, then went on to help in the start up operations for Opechee Construction, where she served as their office manager.
Together, she and her husband have been involved in many of their own business ventures, as well. Recently, they sold a sewer and water company they owned for many years, and Mooney said she gained a lot of knowledge from that company and its dealings with both residents and the Public Service Utilities Commission. They have owned and maintained a number of buildings in Belmont, constructed a condominium complex, then went on to build a housing development off Leavitt Road. They also created and built Briarcrest Estates, a senior housing complex, which she manages today.
"I love my residents at Briarcrest. I'm always here for them, and try to just give back as much as I can," Mooney said.
She added that that can include sitting with them when they're ill, or in any other way that the seniors in the Briarcrest community may need assistance.
Mooney also owns and manages Province Kiln-Dried Firewood, another enjoyable venture for her.
"Some people know me as 'The Wood Lady,' and I love that. I talk to so many people through selling wood, and I really enjoy that part of it. It's a fun business to be in," she said.
Each of these construction projects and businesses have been located in Belmont, and have not only added to the tax base in the community, she said, but employ many people. Through each business she has gained knowledge of water and sewer systems, road construction and maintenance, addressed housing issues and senior citizens' concerns.
"I feel my business experience could only be a positive thing for the town," said Mooney.
As a resident and taxpayer of Belmont, Mooney said she has developed a keen interest in the town and feels the time is right to begin working for her fellow residents to help keep Belmont a great place to live. She looks upon her recent term on the budget committee, where she experienced the entire budget process, as a way she was able to give back to the town by working hard to keep taxes low. She would now like to continue giving back to the community through a new role as selectman.
Chris White will be the third name on the ballot for an opening on the Belmont Board of Selectmen at the March 13 polls.
Calls placed to schedule an interview with Mr. White were not returned and the Winnisquam Echo regrets we cannot provide voters with a profile on this candidate.