Letters to the Editor October 21
Selectmen need a performance review
As voting day nears, it’s time for each of us to look back and do a performance review of our selectmen. I’ve been doing that. It strikes me as ironic that accusations of causing gridlock in our local government are being leveled at three of the sitting Democrats when what I’ve seen at the selectmen’s meetings is obstruction from the three Republicans, plus one.
Their “reasons” for scuttling the land trust deal and taking away the rights of the voters to decide the issue were ludicrous and patronizing. I might have laughed if it were not so sad.
The current school budget fiasco led by Selectman Fracasso’s bullying and defiance of the law has brought more negative statewide attention to Winsted. It would be different if it were a righteous cause and a case of the little guy standing up to the state for good reason. That’s the spin the Republicans are trying to put on it, but, frankly, it’s just another instance of the ill-advised, ignorant bungling that makes us look like fools. My biggest problem with selectmen Albanesius, Beadle and Smith is that they seem to follow the loud one like sheep.
Mayor Perez is kind of quiet. That’s her personality, but she is very smart and in spite of one selectman’s attempts to question her understanding of the issues, I am confident that she understands them far better than he.
I like Mike Renzullo because he has new ideas. Maybe sometimes he’s a little naive, but we need new ideas and Mike wants good things to happen in Winsted.
George Closson is an intelligent, thoughtful and successful businessman. He behaves as a gentleman, is very articulate and I would be pleased to have him represent our town anywhere at any time. He has a proven track record of community service and I want him back on the board.
I want all three of them back on the board and a couple more like them who will make it possible to go forward in Winsted, rather than backward. I want well-reasoned, fair, innovative and respectful government.
I ask you to look back, even further back than this recent term, at the failed housing/golf course project brought to Winsted by a convicted felon and backed by the Republicans and their supporters. Look back at the defeat of the bonding package and the squandering of the fund balance. Look back at the micromanaging and meddling with boards and commissions. Look back at the crude and embarrassing behavior that has occurred at board meetings.
My performance review grades are: Perez, A-; Closson, A-; Renzullo, B; Beadle, C; Albanesius, C; Smith, C-; Fracasso, F.
Government is about building community
This is a little awkward, but I guess I need to say it. To all the Republicans who read my letter last week and mistook my parody for admiration, I apologize. Clearly I said it wrong. To all the Democrats who read my letter and suspected me of perfidy, I promise to abandon subtlety and wit.
So let me say it plainly: Winchester, we can all agree, has some serious problems. Next month we will elect who will attempt to solve them. I intend to support the Democratic candidates because I believe they seek constructive solutions and will make decisions based upon fairness and reason, and will not use public office as a means to punish their enemies and reward their friends.
The campaign slogan for the Democrats is “Building Community.” I hope everyone will think about those two words and everything that they imply, for they are the very essence of good government. Please support the party who wishes to unify, not divide, our community. And please vote. Regardless of the outcome, let next month’s decision be made by the majority, not a small minority.
Voting will make a difference
The decisions of Lisa Smith, Karen Beadle, Glen Albanesius and Ken Fracasso have threatened Winsted’s economic future by illegally voting to lower the education budget $1.3 million below the state-mandated MBR. For taxpayers, this may result in a supplemental tax increase of $1.6 million.
These same four have derailed the town meeting governing process by denying citizens the right to have a vote on a $450,000 land grant from DEEP and a $125,000 transfer of the school bus depot. This could have been desperately needed money for our depleted fund balance.
They have thrown a monkey wrench into the attempt to develop the Capitol Products building, when the town had nothing to lose and everything to gain.
What exactly are these four playing at? They have shown they are not good for our community.
We can make a difference in November by voting for those who are pledged to build community, rather than divide and impede it. Vote for the team that wants to create responsible development, fiscal integrity and respected leadership in education.
R. Glen Zeh
Supporting Smith and the GOP
As I contemplate on the upcoming local elections and how I will vote, three things keep coming to mind.
The first thing is that Lisa Smith does not toe the party line. She is a free thinker, she listens to people and votes on issues in a manner she believes to be in the best interests of the people she represents. She is also compassionate. In December 2010, a young local man was killed on his way home from school. It was his mother’s wish that he be buried immediately. Lisa led the way in getting this done, thus sparing the family the agony of reliving their terrible pain in the spring.
The second is that the taxpayers have for years been demanding accountability on Board of Education spending. Selectmen Ken Fracasso, Karen Beadle and Glen Albenasius, along with Lisa, have done just that.
And last, but certainly not least, is that Winchester has been on a slow but steady decline for the last decade. The one constant during this time has been Althea Perez.
It’s time for a change. I know how I’m voting.
Porter C. Griffin