By Alex Harris
On Tuesday, Ridgefield voters will elect leaders and majorities on every town board. Democrats have nominated 23 stellar candidates. Each has campaigned solely on the basis of their expertise, records, plans, policies, and fitness of character. They are your neighbors and share your priorities and sensibilities.
Because you care about vision, competence, excellence, honesty, and integrity in local government, we nominated First Selectman Rudy Marconi and Selectwoman Barbara Manners for re-election and nominated proven public servant Sean Connelly to maintain a productive majority on the crucial Board of Selectmen. Rudy, Barbara, and Sean have detailed their concrete plans to amplify Ridgefield’s considerable charms and strengths and to successfully address current and future challenges. In sharp contrast with the exaggerated complaints, angry scapegoating, and vague promises offered by two of their opponents, Rudy’s, Barbara’s, and Sean’s extensive records of service to Ridgefield and their substantive, positive campaigns demonstrate their unwavering focus on fulfilling your priorities.
Because you care about enhancing Ridgefield’s financial health, we nominated transformative Town Treasurer Molly McGeehin and esteemed Board of Finance chair Dave Ulmer for re-election and nominated highly-accomplished financial professional Karen Ogden for election to the Board of Finance. Because you can about maintaining/elevating the excellence of Ridgefield Public Schools, we nominated strategic planner Jonathan Steckler for re-election and CPA Kenneth Sjoberg for election to the Board of Education. These five possess outstanding qualifications, expertise and abilities. They have spoken truthfully and substantively to the real opportunities, issues, and trade-offs of today and tomorrow, while their opponents have negatively mischaracterized our schools and promised an ambiguous and arithmetically-impossible combination of higher spending and lower taxes. Molly, Dave, Karen, Jonathan, and Ken are honest, capable problem-solvers Ridgefield needs for Treasurer, Board of Finance, and Board of Education.
Because you care about Ridgefield’s natural environment, wetlands, aquifers, residential livability, and the viability of its retail, entertainment, dining, and cultural sector, we nominated eminently-qualified reform candidates committed to accountability and transparency for the four boards impacting those precious town attributes: Susan Baker, Tracey Miller, Kory Salomone, and David Tatge for the newly-independent Inland Wetlands Board; Ben Nneji, PhD (Engineering), Susan Consentino, and Robert Hendrick for Planning & Zoning Commission; Sky Cole, Joe Pastore, Robert Byrnes, and Aaron Lockwood for Zoning Board of Appeals; and Stan Galanski for Board of Assessment Appeals. These reformers will flip the majorities and end P&Z/IWB’s fondness for rubberstamping reckless projects.
Because you care about efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, and morale in our Police Department, we nominated George Kain, PhD (Criminal Science) and Nick Perna, PhD (Economics) for re-election, and Issy Caporale (top-performing Coast Guard CPO and police dispatcher, retired) for election to the Board of Police Commissioners.
All 23 Democratic candidates exemplify the best of our town, combining love for Ridgefield with relevant, essential expertise. They are your neighbors and share your sensibilities and priorities. Read their platforms, biographies, and reasons for running, at www.ridgefielddems.com. We respectfully request your vote for all these candidates on November 5.
The Ridgefield Democratic Town Committee provides this column.