OPINION: Candidate Spotlight: Experience and a proven track record

By Vinnie Testaxz

Another local election is upon us, and we have important decisions to make regarding who will represent us. I am completing my 8th term on the Town Council and served for eight years on the  Board of Education and two on the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Commission.

For those who do not know about me, I was born, raised, and schooled in Wallingford, and graduated from Fairfield University. I raised my family here and have been serving in one way or another for over 30 years. I currently teach Culinary Arts at Lyman Hall High School and coach the Boys’ Lacrosse team. I am happily married to Kimberly Testa. I am the father/step-father to 5 grown children and have one delightful and very amusing grandson.

Moving forward, I believe the most important ongoing issue is maintaining a strong business base which reduces the burden on residential taxpayers. I will continue to pursue policies that encourage development in our industrial zones as well as develop programs that attract clean and R & D businesses.

What I offer is experience and a proven track record of working collaboratively with colleagues and the administration to create responsible budgets and complete projects that benefit the community as a whole.

I was instrumental in driving the change to a self-insurance model for employee health benefits, which has saved tax dollars. I was forceful in my insistence that athletic complexes at our high schools were funded and completed as planned in the face of administrative efforts to reduce the scope. I have been at the forefront of efforts to complete the renovation of our Community Pool and the installation of air conditioning and new heating and ventilation systems at the animal shelter. Continued perseverance will ultimately see both projects through. Overall, I have a record of working in a bipartisan manner to overcome roadblocks and develop consensus.

We need to better address our infrastructure. This should be done in conjunction with upgrading the broadband capabilities in Town Hall and across all departments. We are slowly losing our competitive edge in attracting businesses.

I will continue to insist that the Town Council be involved in decision-making about how to use our $13 million in APRA funds, as is our responsibility per the Town Charter.

I will continue to strongly support our school system which is in need of a major renovation program.

I’m honored to be part of a strong slate of Democratic candidates led by our mayoral candidate, Riley O’Connell. I strongly support Nicole Barillaro, Sam Carmody, Bruce Conroy, Gina Morgenstein, and Alexa Tomassi for Town Council. All bring unique experiences and perspectives worthy of your consideration. Our BOE candidates, Mike Votto, Kathy Castelli, Pat Reynolds, Jacqueline McFarland, Maureen Reed, and Mike Urban offer a strong combination of educational and business experience perfectly suited to the decisions facing our school system. 

I have been honored to serve you for so many years. I hope you see fit to continue to trust me to do so again. 

Democrat Vinnie Testa is seeking re-election to the Wallingford Town Council.

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