Two candidates are seeking an open at-large seat on the Brunswick Town Council, the town’s only contested local election in November.

Planning Board member Sande Updegraph and legislative aide Dan Ankeles are vying for the seat being vacated by Town Councilor Alison Harris.

In District 3, Daniel Jenkins is the only candidate for the seat being vacated by Councilor Suzan Wilson. Chairman John Perrault, who is running for re-election in District 4, is also unopposed.

First-time candidate Ankeles has worked in the Maine House Democratic Office for the past six years, and the first of his children will enter the Brunswick school system next year.

The two biggest issues he has heard about from residents, he said, are affordable housing and protecting the quality of education. He also said coming up with creative ways to fix what he called the town’s “fiscal hole” is important.

“Now you have people scapegoating the education system for all the town’s budget problems,” Ankeles said. “And people are fighting about that instead of getting together and figuring out what else we can do to spread the tax burden through tax base growth.”


Attracting more young entrepreneurs to Brunswick, especially to areas like Cook’s Corner, he said, could be one way to do so, although he said anyone who thinks they know the “magic formula” for economic growth is arrogant.

Updegraph has been a member of the Planning Board since 2015 and is interested in creating a long-term plan for the town’s future.

If Updegraph is elected to the council in November, she will be required to resign from the Planning Board. She said choosing to run with that in mind was a “big decision,” and that she will miss it if she wins.

She said there is an obvious desire in her district for “control on property taxes.” She also said focusing on taxes will be her primary goal.

Updegraph is involved with creating a senior tax relief program in town, and though there are “many details to come,” she thinks it needs to happen. “I think it allows seniors who have contributed and have some history with Brunswick or other towns to stay here,” she said.

Elizabeth Clemente can be contacted at 781-3661 ext. 100 or at:

Twitter: epclemente

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