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Spicer, Stefanini will face off for Framingham mayor

Framingham is transitioning from a town with selectmen and a Town Meeting to a city with a mayor and council.
Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff/File 2015
Framingham is transitioning from a town with selectmen and a Town Meeting to a city with a mayor and council.

A Town Meeting member and a former state representative will face off to become Framingham’s first mayor.

In a historic election Tuesday, Yvonne Spicer and John Stefanini were the top two vote-getters and will move on to November’s general election.

Seven candidates were vying to lead Framingham as it transitions from a Town Meeting form of government to a city run by a mayor and council.

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Spicer, a Town Meeting member and vice president of advocacy and educational partnerships at the Museum of Science, received 5,964 votes.

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Stefanini, an attorney who previously served two terms as a selectman and five terms as a state representative, received 3,184 votes.

Joshua Paul Horrigan garnered 545 votes; Priscila Sousa, 537; Mark Tilden, 439; Benjamin Neves-Grigg, 134; and Dhruba Sen, 101.

Spicer, whose team knocked on about 18,000 doors during the campaign, said she was ecstatic.

“This community was ready for change and something different and someone different,’’ she said. “They were looking for a fresh face and a clear vision for Framingham.’’

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Stefanini said he’s pleased to move on to the general election but acknowledged he has to make up ground.

“It’s a great day for Framingham,’’ he said. “This is a historic and important election for our community, probably more so than any in my lifetime. We’ve got to redouble our efforts to bring our message to voters.’’

According to Town Clerk Valerie Mulvey, 10,994 of 39,996 registered voters went to the polls — a 27.5 percent turnout.

Town residents also narrowed the field for at-large councilor and district councilor in districts 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7.

There were no preliminary races for the other districts or for the School Committee.

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In April, voters narrowly approved a ballot question that changes the government’s structure from a town to a city. Framingham has about 68,000 residents.

Under the new charter, the City Council will have nine district members serving two-year terms and two at-large members serving four-year terms.

The mayor will replace the Board of Selectmen as the town’s chief executive.

And the City Council, meeting at least monthly, will replace the representative Town Meeting.

The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 7; the last day to register to vote is Oct. 18.

Jennifer Fenn Lefferts
can be reached at jflefferts@yahoo.com.