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New candidates for Concord City Council include registered sex offender

Two new candidates filed to run for at-large city council seats yesterday; one of them is a registered sex offender.

Timothy Willis of Thorndike Street said he decided to run for city council because he was disappointed with the city council’s recent vote to acquire an armored BearCat vehicle. Willis, 48, is also a registered sex offender. He was convicted of a misdemeanor sexual assault of a minor between the ages of 13 and 16. He was convicted in York, Maine, in 2003, according to the New Hampshire sex offender registry.

Willis said yesterday that he believes he was wrongfully convicted.

“I’ve been an upstanding citizen since then,” he said. “I have custody of my child. . . . I hope the residents . . . focus on the positives.”

If elected, Willis said he would focus on improving roads and bridges in the city and spend time “focused on what people want me to vote on.”

“We’re kind of on a shaky foundation, I think, with where we’re putting our money,” he said.

He said he chose to run for an at-large seat because he spoke with his Ward 6 councilor, Allen Bennett, this spring to ask him for safety improvements at the intersection of Thorndike and South State streets. He said he also agreed with Bennett’s vote against a federal grant for a BearCat.

Scott Welch of Borough Road also filed to run for an at-large council seat yesterday. He could not be reached for comment last night.

Welch, Willis, current Ward 4 Councilor Amanda Grady Sexton and current Ward 10 Councilor Fred Keach will run for two at-large seats in the November election.

At-large Councilor Michael DelloIacono filed yesterday to run in Ward 4. He had filed last week to run at-large, but changed his filing after Grady Sexton decided to run at-large. DelloIacono recently purchased a home on Church Street.

“I’ve always wanted to run at the ward level, so I decided I wanted to serve the neighborhood that I just bought the house in,” he said.

DelloIacono will run against Kevin Bloom, who filed to run in Ward 4 this week. He told the Monitor he decided to run because he opposes the city’s acquisition of a BearCat, and he wants to promote peace and frugality.

Grady Sexton said she looks forward to “an ongoing dialogue” with the other at-large candidates.

“I’m running at-large with a focus on lowering the tax burden on citizens, creating a vibrant community and expanding our city’s tax base through economic development,” she said.

Keach said yesterday that he welcomes a contested race for the two at-large council seats because “the process works best when there’s many people involved in it.” He said he would like to focus on improving the city’s infrastructure by paving roads, and he is most proud of the city council’s work in recent years to manage the city budget.

“Concord economically is in great shape, and I do think it’s because of all the hard work we did,” Keach said.

(Laura McCrystal can be reached at 369-3312 or
lmccrystal@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @lmccrystal.)

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