Happy Fourth of July from New Britain Democrats
We remember….that this is the day when, 239 years ago, our founding patriots declared our independence, proclaiming that all of us are created equal, endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights including the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. A couple of centuries later, we have made ourselves into a big, bold, dynamic, and diverse country. We are of all races, we come from all places, we practice all faiths, and believe in all sorts of different ideas. But our allegiance to this declaration – this idea – is the creed that binds us together. It’s what, out of many, makes us one.
President Obama’s weekly address, July 4, 2015
Campaign 2015: Democratic Slate Endorsement Is July 23rd
Headquarters Opening/Meet The Candidates July 18th
The 47-member Democratic Town Committee will make its endorsements for municipal offices on Thursday, July 23rd, at 7 p.m. at New Britain City Hall.
Candidates for Mayor, Treasurer, Tax Collector, Common Council (15), Board of Education (3), Board of Assessment Appeals (2) and Constable (4) are slated for endorsements. All offices are two-year terms except for the Board of Education’s four-year term.
The DTC’s Nominations Committee has been gathering information and interviewing candidates for city offices since the spring and will issue a report to the membership before the July 23rd meeting.
A headquarters opening reception and opportunity to meet candidates will be held on Saturday July 18th from 10 am to 1 pm at Democratic headquarters 19 Bassett Street. For more information about the endorsements and 2015 campaign call 860-505-8901 or email email@example.com
Setting the Record Straight on The Municipal Budget
In a June 24th Herald Letter to the Editor former Mayor and Senator Don DeFronzo responded to a recent partisan salvo (letter) from the GOP’s Lou Salvio against Democrats, setting the record straight on the city’s budget problems.
“Alderman Lou Salvio’s case of selective memory is once again on full display in his recent letter concerning the city’s budget. History tells us that a financial crisis is usually created as the result of a pattern of irresponsible budgeting, and not as the result of one single budget. Mr. Salvio’s sense of history extends no further back than 2011 and, as usual, he lays total blame for the city’s financial problems on the single, two-year term of former Mayor O’Brien. Of course, by then independent auditors and others had documented that the city’s financial condition was already in critical condition. Whatever O’Brien did, or didn’t do, the truth is the Stewart dynasty has now controlled the mayor’s office and city spending for 10 out of the last 12 years and must assume its share of responsibility. The decade-long Stewart budget and tax policy has been a disaster. Every dollar of one-time revenue was spent, revenue estimates were manipulated, borrowing increased and debt service costs sky rocketed, tax and fee increases hit all residents, and no effective expenditure reduction plan was or has been implemented. And by the way, all of this was done under the watchful eye of Alderman Salvio who strongly and repeatedly supported Stewart’s irresponsible plans.
Furthermore, Alderman Salvio’s suggestion that City Councils “… have controlled how the city spends money” is laughable. The members of the Finance Committee, appointed by the mayor, develop the budget with substantial input from his or her commissioners and department heads. That document is then modified by the mayor before it is submitted to the council. Clearly, the dominant figure in the budget-making process is the mayor, the city’s chief executive officer. The council can influence the budget around the margins, but even after passage, it is the Mayor who is responsible for implementing the budget and controlling spending.
After arguably the largest across-the-board property tax increase in city history, 11 percent, and still failing to implement any substantial cost reduction plan, this year some Republicans, including Mr. Salvio, sought to reward office holders with large salary increases. Fortunately, council Democrats defeated that plan. We can either buy into Mr. Salvio’s pointless venom, or agree that the time for finger-pointing is long past. What beleaguered city taxpayers, including small businesses, need is a commitment to a bi-partisan budget policy that shows discipline, expenditures reductions and a well-reasoned and balanced approach to financial management. We’ve done it before, and it can be done again.”
Right To Vote Initiative Continues To Restore “Inactive” Voters To the Voter List; Volunteers Needed To Finish This Month
A group of Democratic Town Committee members and volunteers is continuing to phone and canvass a list of more than 10,000 “inactive” voters to bring residents who still reside in the city back to the active voter rolls. In June voter registration totals 23,927. Voter enrollment for the last Presidential election in 2012 totaled 32,898 and the inactive list was 2,323. A re-canvass in early 2013 before the last municipal election dramatically increased the inactive list and 7,687 voters or 23% of voters became inactive
The Right to Vote initiative began in June and volunteers have contacted and confirmed more than 200 residents still living in the city who can now get back on the active list. Organizers say that approximately half of the inactive list with phone numbers has been contacted. The phoning and canvassing will continue until all names have been reached on the list. Organizers believe the drive will result in between 500 and 800 voters of all party affiliations but primarily Democrats that have been removed from voter rolls can be restored.
Democratic Registrar of Voters Juan Verdu is cooperating with the project volunteers. Between January and April 30th Registrars of Voters in all towns are required to conduct an “annual house-to-house canvass” of voters. In New Britain, only mailings or the change of address notifications are generally used to confirm voters and establish a new inactive list each year. Door-to-door canvassing or telephoning are generally not used. Election officials cite current staffing levels and budgets as reasons the canvassing methodology is limited.
If any New Britain voter has recently moved within the city, or has not responded to the Registrar’s mail canvass, he or she should contact the Registrar’s Office at 860-826-3310 to check on their voting status.
Volunteers are still needed to complete the drive this month. For more information on the “Right To Vote” initiative call 860-505-8901 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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Labor donated. Any costs associated with this message paid for by New Britain Democratic Town Committee, Post Office Box 2112, New Britain CT 06050 John Valengavich, Treasurer. Approved by John McNamara