NEW MILFORD — The Democrats won five seats on the Board of Education in Tuesday’s election to sway the board’s balance of power.

Democratic incumbent David Lawson will serve a fourth term and will be joined by fellow Democrats Brain McCauley, Tammy McInerney, Jason T. Schemm and Bill Dahl. They will join Democratic incumbent Bob Coppola and three Republican members serving mid-term.

The Democrats will now hold a 6-3 party advantage on the board after the Republicans had held six of the nine seats.

“We are absolutely delighted,” said McInerney, who previously served as director of alumni relations at Western Connecticut State University. “We need to bring a lot of change to the education board, bring some balance. And we have a great team to do that. We need to start really hearing the teachers and the parents of our students and respond to their concerns.”

Lawson was ecstatic Tuesday night as numbers came in that showed a Democratic lead.

“This is wonderful,” Lawson said. “We’ll have a Democratic mayor, Democratic balance on the Town Council and on the Board of Education. We can fashion the budget the district needs.”

The election also saw a high voter turnout of 45 percent, which led to four of the town’s polling districts running out of ballots.

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New Milford Board of Education race by the numbers

Brian McCauley (D) 3,456

Tammy McInerney (D) 3,441

David Lawson (D) 3,612

Jason T. Schemm (D) 3,351

Bill Dahl (D) 3.673

Barbara Parks Greco (R) 2,810

Scott Leddy (R) 2.695

Theresa Volinski (R) 2,886

Democrat David Gronbach won the mayoral race, defeating incumbent Republican Pat Murphy. Five Democrats were also elected to the Town Council with four incumbent Republicans retaining seats.

Many residents were dissatisfied with the present education board, which changes Dec. 1. The closing of Pettibone School, the property being turned over to the town, and the reconfiguring of grades displeased many residents. Teachers have also filed a grievance with the state against the education board. Many blamed the Republican balance on the board for decisions that did not reflect the wishes of many parents.

stuz@newstimes.com; 203-731-3352