New Bedford Light columnist Jack Spillane joined us this week on Townsquare Sunday to review some of the major stories in the news.

Among them were the election results, with Attleboro Mayor and Democrat Paul Heroux topping Republican incumbent Thomas Hodgson in the race for Bristol County Sheriff in the region's most-watched contest.

Spillane said he "audibly gasped" on election night when he learned Heroux had out-polled Hodgson by more than 4,500 votes in New Bedford.

"That's an awfully big number for the sheriff to overcome," Spillane said.

He was correct. Heroux's victory margin ended up around 2,800 votes over Hodgson.

Spillane credited the Attleboro mayor's victory to a lot of door-to-door campaigning, a lot of fund-raising, and effective, professional mailings.

"Heroux explained that Hodgson made himself a national figure on the immigration issue, and when you become a very high-profile figure on the national level like that, you attract a lot of attention, and that attention translated into money," Spillane said.

After the election, Spillane spent time with Election Commissioner Manny DeBrito and concluded the counting of votes is a lot different than a decade ago. With early voting, mail-in voting, and vote counting on election day, the process is much more challenging, and complicated.

Two other stories of note: Spillane updated us on the City of New Bedford's plan to replace its lead water pipes. As you might imagine, it all comes down to money.

The Light also recently reported on the increase in homeless students in New Bedford. Spillane said he was surprised and pleased to learn New Bedford Public Schools had created a separate unit to support homeless students in the district.

Finally, New Bedford voters overwhelming voted to join the MBTA and bring commuter rail to the city. Will Spillane ride the train? Listen to the interview to find out.

The complete Townsquare Sunday interview with Jack Spillane can be heard here:

Townsquare Sunday is a weekly public affairs program heard Sunday mornings at 6 a.m. on 1420 AM and 99.5 FM.

The program spotlights individuals and organizations working to make the SouthCoast a better place to life and work.

If you would like your organization featured on Townsquare Sunday, please contact the host at

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