Monday, January 08, 2007

Local Politics Roundup

I've been sorely neglecting the town weeklies over the last year, and I'm going to start to remedy that now with a look at some of the political stories out there in our towns.


Wethersfield has a new mayor after Mayor Russell Morin became a state representative. The new mayor is lifelong Wethersfield resident Andrew Adil, a Democratic town councilman.
Adil said he feels "an obligation to pay the town back for all it has done for me." He also thanked ex-mayor Morin for all he had done as mayor, but especially for his dedication to cleaning up the Wethersfield Cove. Adil added that he hopes to continue to work on what services the town offers residents, and to work with the Economic Development Improvement Commission (EDIC) and the newly formed redevelopment agency.

Democrat Paul Montinieri was also appointed to the council.

Gould, G.C. "Town council appoints new mayor and councilor." Wethersfield Post 4 January, 2007.


Charter changes may be coming as a charter review commission begins to meet. One of the major issues seems to be the fate of the RTM:
"...[W]e (Darien) haven't had enough people over the years to run for the RTM, which is directly attributed to people not understanding the board's role in town," [Commission member] Tallis said. "The RTM is extremely critical to how this town functions, and it will be our goal as a commission to communicate that, and other such pertinent information, to the public."

The RTM structure is somewhat common in southwestern Connecticut, but almost nonexistent elsewhere in the state.

Foster, Brian. "Charter Review to Begin." Darien News-Review 4 January, 2007.


First Selectman Ken Flatto is getting a head start on this year's election:
Democratic First Selectman Ken Flatto and Selectman Denise Dougiello have filed paperwork in the town clerk's office as a first step in testing the re-election waters.
Although Flatto acknowledged that the filing was "a little early," he said the decision was based on a large number of supporters who expressed "desires of setting up a committee."

There is no Republican candidate as yet.

Lynch, Erin. "Exploring Re-Election." Fairfield Citizen-News 5 January, 2007.


A town panel has ruled that a member of the RTM can't vote because his house is not in Greenwich--although his property partly is:
The Board for Admission of Electors voted 3-1 to adopt a 10-page decision denying Jerry and Marianne Porricelli voting and residency status, noting that even though their property straddles the Greenwich-Stamford border, their house is entirely in Stamford.
The Porricellis have argued that before they moved to the 9 Hillcrest Road home, the town's registrars assured them in writing repeatedly that they would remain Greenwich voters.

Greenwich is a weird place. Enough said.

Cassidy, Martin. "RTM member can't vote." Greenwich Time 8 January, 2007.

What other local stories are out there that I'm missing?


Anonymous said...

Don't forget that Hartford's mayoral race will be a hot one this year. El Jefe, as a Courant columnist likes to call him, is finding that acting like a dictator can be a tough thing to undo come election time.

Among those already announced: Frank Barrows. Among those planning to announce: Minnie Gonzalez, Art Feltman.

The one most likely to succeed: I. Charles Mathews.

Genghis Conn said...

You're right, Anonymous, Hartford is going to be really interesting. I'm not surprised about Minnie Gonzalez--but how much support does she really have?

The wild card is Denise Nappier, although she has been quiet about her intentions.

CTBlogger over at ConnecticutBlog has promised to follow this race closely.

Anonymous said...

How about all the empty storefronts in West Hartford Center? Thank you Blue Back Square.

GMR said...

There's a huge issue brewing in Darien about affordable housing. This couple bought a single family house (sounds like a McMansion), and have proposed to replace it with a 20 unit apartment building with a few affordable units thrown in. If a building has 20% affordable units, and a town has less than 10% of its housing classified as "affordable", then the local zoning board can stop a development only if the zoning board proves it would be detrimental. The people in Darien are really worked up about it.

Over in Trumbull, residents are fiercely opposed to a UI substation proposed for a residential area. The residents want UI to spend an additional $11.5 million or so to build the substation on an industrial property that UI would need to buy. If you ever wonder why electric rates are so high in Connecticut, this may be a reason, don't you think?

Attorney General Blumenthal went swimming in Long Island sound yesterday to protest the Broadwater platform. One thing that strikes me about the opposition to this platform is that no one seems to have ever said where a good location for a LNG terminal would be (although they all seem to pay lip service to the fact that we need to address the energy shortage in the area).

Easton last year blocked basically every commercial development. Some church on Blackrock Turnpike in Fairfield wants to buy a parcel in Easton and move there. Easton is of course opposed to measure, citing traffic. (I've been through Easton a few times, and since there's nothing there, I can't see how much more traffic, especially on a Sunday morning, would hurt much of anything). This church is a "mega church" and has grown very quickly during the past 10 years or so.

Fuzzy Turtle said...

the Episcopalians in some CT parishes are all OMG TEH GAYZZZZ.

Who knew Wasps could get all uppity?

the "Connecticut Six" are : St. Paul's in Darien, Christ Church in Watertown, Trinity Church in Bristol, Christ and the Epiphany Church in East Haven and the Bishop Seabury Church in Groton.

cgg said...

I'll be curious to see who the Republican's run against Flatto. The Board of Selectman in Fairfield will now serve 4 year terms instead of 2. This may make for a more aggressive campaign.

Anonymous said...

The proposed church GMR likes so much has boarding rooms, all day all nigh weekly activites and multi-bay gas station and gift shop where you can get most anything. It's a compound.

The affordable housing statute puts a gun to people's heads and raises local taxes in the process. DeStefano - the liberal commie - would have even changed it.

Anonymous said...

The support factor for Minnie is limited and not necessarily citywide, but in Hartford, where politics is still far more racial than it should be, she can't necessarily sell her constituents on a Black candidate over a Hispanic one. Her best move strategically, therefore, is to put herself in the race to split that Latino vote. Hurts El Jefe, not her.

Anonymous said...

Ahh yes, BlueBack Square. The developer sells the town a bill of goods and then the town has to raise taxes because the bill is incomplete.

Anonymous said...

Seymour's in a struggle over videotaping its meetings -- seems that the powers that be are grabbing technicalities to hold by the fingernails to a reason not to permit taping of the meetings.

Anonymous said...

wah! wah! Blue back square sucks! Boo! Hiss! If I lived in west hartford i would have let westfarms take over the whole horrible town and turn it into a food court. Yayy westfarms!

Anonymous said...

Blue back really is killing WH center, you could tell by the hundreds and hundreds of people in the Center on saturday and the hour long wait to get into half of the restaurnats. It was like a ghost town. Spooky.

GMR said...

The proposed church GMR likes so much has boarding rooms, all day all nigh weekly activites and multi-bay gas station and gift shop where you can get most anything. It's a compound.

Uh, I've never attended this church, and I have no idea what they preach, and I don't know of anyone who attends the church.

Most churches have some sort of housing for their head minister. I haven't seen anything about what else this church is going to have. Why do they need multiple gas bays?

Anonymous said...

If you are going to accuse the Mayor of Stratford of a cover up without proof then you ought to do the honorable thing and resign Councilman Feehan.

Have you no sense of decency sir?
You like the cameras on you I know.
Cut the theatrics, it is boring.

Anonymous said...

Business in West Hartford Center was so lacking during the Christmas season that the Business Association took to taking out TV ads to promote shopping in the center.. we never had to beg anyone to come shop in the Center!
Chicos is struggling, Max's was threatening to leave..and the Japanese restaurant has followed the many stores that have left is suffering in town.
With the way the rents are increasing on LaSalle and Farmington because of BBS, we'll end up with nothing but chain stores.. just like Westfarms what's the difference in the end?
This next town budget cycle will be very interesting. Town Manager Barry Feldman jumped ship and left Slifka and company on the hook. No surprise to me.

Anonymous said...

because it's a lot more than a church if you had done the slightest bit of research on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Yes, things are so bad in West Hartford that the New York Times decided to highlight how Blue Back Square is yielding success that the state-funded projects in Hartford can only dream of. "A Suburb's Big Project is Outpacing Hartford's" by Jane Gordon, The New York Times, December 20, 2006.

Anonymous said...

The New York Times...

oh yeah that's a publication that has always been know to print the truth..

So do tell ... what success this has yielded so far.. we've lost so many stores in the center already.. business in the center is suffering and we are not getting what we were promised.

believe your fairy tales and the NYT .. West Hartford got screwed.

Anonymous said...

Please. By this time next year, you'll look like a fool.