Candidate profile: David Hughes for Rochester Water Commission

May 19, 2021

ROCHESTER — David Hughes has been in town government for 60 years, and he thinks the Water Commission should be as independent as possible.

Hughes is opposed to his opponent Selectman Brad Morse’s campaign for the commission because he thinks the Water Commission shouldn’t be influenced by the Selectmen.

“I would be a single vote,” Hughes said. “My opponent would be two votes.”

Many of the responsibilities of the Water Commission and Board of Selectmen overlap — and the two groups occasionally have joint meetings to hash out water-related issues together.

“With open communication … we don’t need another board voting on issues that pertain to water,” Hughes said.

But Hughes said the main reason he decided to run for the Water Commission in the May 26 election is: “It’s an open position on the ballot.”

He added that, as a relatively new commission, “we need somebody to represent the town and our water.”

For the last 60 years, Hughes has served on boards such as the Mattapoisett River Valley Water Supply District Commission and the Rochester Board of Selectmen. He was also once a firefighter in town, is an elected constable and is one of the town’s Park Commissioners.

“I think that qualifies me to serve in other capacities,” Hughes said.

Professionally, Hughes has been an engineer and a business owner. Currently, at 80 years old, he works as a teaching assistant at Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School.

With water sourced in Rochester going to New Bedford, Fairhaven, Marion and Mattapoisett, Hughes said he’d like to see Rochester become more prioritized in the distribution of water.

“I just would like to make sure we are protected when the need comes,” he said.

With all his life’s experience, Hughes thinks he’s qualified for the Water Commission.

“Old is experience, remember that,” he said.