By Lisa Loomis and Kara Herlihy

Valley voters give the nod to Mitt Romney in the Republican presidential primary with Ron Paul a close second.

Voters in Duxbury, Fayston, Moretown, Waitsfield and Warren cast 297 votes for Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney, 223 for challenger Ron Paul, 163 for Rick Santorum, 45 for Newt Gingrich and 21 for John Huntsman (see chart).

Ballots were cast at polling places throughout The Valley while voters attended to Town Meeting business, passing town and school budgets, eating community lunches and discussing the issues of the day.

In Waitsfield, voters discussed a reserve fund to explore space for new town offices at great length and ultimately added $15,000 to the $35,000 already proposed for that fund. Town voters also elected a new member of the select board – and the board’s youngest member ever – with Logan Cooke, 21, defeating his opponent Darryl Forrest by a vote of 243 to 198. Both were running for a two-year term on the board. 

In Moretown, voters elected a new select board member (for three years) by a write-in campaign, placing Michelle Beard on the board, along with re-electing Clark Amadon and Tom Martin to one-year terms on the board.

In Warren, residents voted to, henceforth, have their constables appointed by the select board, versus elected, and also learned that their constables had been carrying firearms for over a year and that the town’s insurance went up 44 percent because of the armed constables.

Fayston voters lauded the road crew and, after much discussion, decided to spend $10,000 to create a town conservation fund.

Duxbury voters rejected the creation of a road commissioner and decided to continue to elect town officers from the floor of Town Meeting rather than switching to Australian ballot.