Martha’s Vineyard voters head to the polls Thursday

Polls will be open from 7 am to 8 pm, next Thursday across the Island.

The state auditor says towns should be reimbursed for the cost of early voting. - File photo

Massachusetts voters will head to the polls on Thursday, Sept. 8, in a state primary election that will help set the stage for the general election in November.

Registered independents (unenrolled), may vote in the primary election but must request only one party’s ballot. Registered Democrats and Republicans may request only their party’s ballot.

Earlier this year, state Sen. Dan Wolf (D-Harwich) and state Rep. Timothy Madden (D-Nantucket), both of whom represented the Cape and Islands, announced they would not seek re-election. As a result, the state primary is shaping up to be a lively contest. Five candidates for state senator and seven for state representative have jumped into the ring.

At the local level, longtime Dukes County Sheriff Mike McCormack and longtime Dukes County Registrar of Deeds Dianne Powers announced their retirements. In each case, their second in command will seek to replace them.

Polls will be open from 7 am to 8 pm in each Island town at the following locations: Aquinnah Town Hall; Chilmark Community Center; West Tisbury Public Safety Building; Edgartown Town Hall; Oak Bluffs Public Library; Tisbury Emergency Services Building.

State senator

There are three Democratic and two Republican candidates on the ballot. Brian Mannal’s name will still appear, although he has withdrawn from the race.

Julian Cyr (D) ( of Truro worked for the state Department of Public Health, and currently serves on the board of directors of Health Imperatives, a nonprofit health and human services agency that provides services to families and individuals on Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.

Sheila R. Lyons (D) ( of Wellfleet has worked over 20 years as a geriatric social worker, aiding and counseling senior citizens and their families. She has served as a Barnstable County commissioner since 2009.

James H. Crocker (R) ( of Barnstable is a real estate professional who has served as a Barnstable town councilor for 10 years.

Anthony E. Schiavi (R) ( of Harwich, a retired U.S. Air Force brigadier general, is a former owner of two Cape Cod companies, and previously served as the town manager and police commissioner for the town of Ashland.

State representative

There are five Democratic and no Republican candidates on the Sept. 8 primary ballot. Two additional candidates, Jacob N. Ferry ( of West Tisbury and Tobias B. Glidden ( of Nantucket, are running as Independents.

Dylan Fernandes (D) ( of Falmouth most recently worked as digital director in the office of Attorney General Maura Healey, a position he resigned last spring in order to focus on his campaign. Previously, he served as political director for Ms. Healey’s 2014 campaign, managing her statewide field staff organization and digital media.

Michael J. Heylin (D) ( of Falmouth is the executive director of Raynham Community Access Media, a nonprofit media organization, and has been covering events at the Massachusetts State House for the past seven years.

Ewell Hopkins (D) ( is chairman of the Oak Bluffs Democratic Town Committee, president of the Martha’s Vineyard Democratic Council, and a member of the Oak Bluffs planning board, an elected position. He formerly worked as a business development professional.

Jessica G. Lambert (D) ( of Falmouth serves as the chief information officer and an energy consultant at Next Generation Energy Initiative, a not-for-profit organization she helped found in 2010. Timothy Soverino (D) (email of Nantucket is a former four-term selectman. Now retired, he was the fire alarm superintendent for the Nantucket Fire Department for 25 years, responsible for commercial fire alarm and sprinkler inspections and installations. Mr. Soverino also served as a firefighter and an EMT.

Other races

The Sept. 8 primary ballot will include candidates for a Ninth District representative in U.S. Congress, First District councillor, Dukes County sheriff, Dukes County registrar of deeds, and seven Dukes County commissioners.