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Letters: Voters back local candidates in upcoming election

Local issues


I am writing a letter to encourage all Wallingford Democrats to come out and vote on election day this November 7. Local issues are important to people. Many people would like to see our Community Pool open up again. Something should be done about the condition of things like the sidewalks on South Main St. A man was killed because he felt he had to use the street because his motored wheel chair could not go over the cracks. We need more modern technology for our town hall. Less reliance on paper and more on the internet can save money. 

James Buchanan, Wallingford



I'm honored to introduce myself as a candidate for the Southington Board of Finance. I've lived in town for ten years, and during that time, I've worked hard to support and advocate for those who often get overlooked. The purpose that drives career, education, and volunteerism is best expressed by Proverbs 3:27: “Don't withhold good from someone who deserves it when it is in your power to do so.” My actions speak for themselves. I've been active in the community as a volunteer and fundraiser, supporting organizations like the YMCA, Southington Community Services, and Bread for Life. I previously served on the Southington Commission for Persons with Disabilities, and I'm currently a leader on the statewide CSCC Student Disability Council. While other candidates undoubtedly recognize the impacts of tax hikes and service reductions on vulnerable groups, my life experiences as an underprivileged youth, parent of a child with special needs, and healthcare professional working primarily with seniors have equipped me to approach these challenges with unmatched empathy and understanding. If you vote for me, here's my promise: I'll be a pragmatic and humble public servant who will listen and learn, I'll keep a watchful eye on our finances, make sure our community and schools are safe for our kids, and ensure the needs of our seniors are met — without all the partisan drama. I'm thankful that the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) supports me, and I hope, on November 7th, you will too. Together, we can make sure Southington's finances work for everyone.

Candice Mazzarella, Southington

Best choice 


While I am sad to see Mike Cardona stepping away from the City Council, I am thrilled to support him for city clerk. Over the past few years, I have reached out to him with questions and concerns on a number of issues — from nearby crosswalks to the library renovation — and he has always responded promptly and addressed the issues. His care for his constituents, ability to collaborate with others, and experience serving Meriden as a City Councilor make him the best choice for City Clerk. Please join me in supporting him on November 7!

Sarah Taylor, Meriden

Unwavering commitment 


My wife, Kristi, possesses an unwavering commitment to improving our community and the lives of its residents. Her dedication to making a positive impact is evident through her active involvement, whether it's serving on the library board or contributing to the democratic town committee. I take great pride in endorsing her candidacy for Wallingford Town Council. I kindly urge you to stand alongside me in supporting Kristi Doerr on November 7th.

Brian Doerr, Wallingford



I've just read about Mike Roberts and my condolences to Edna and his family.  I never hunted and used to fish, but I enjoyed his columns over the years and will sorely miss them. I also would like to put forth the proposition that Red Bridge be renamed The Mike Roberts Memorial Bridge!!  I think it would be a great gesture in his memory.

Roy Blazejowski, Meriden

No book bans 


Municipal elections determine how our city is run. Even locally, party affiliation matters. One major party is led by people who tried to overthrow a legal election. Some of the folks who advocated insurrection claim they’re for “law and order.” That’s hilarious. Unless that party’s local candidates renounce their national leaders, I don’t trust them to make sound decisions for Meriden. The Democratic candidates for City Council and Board of Education are diverse, service-oriented and committed to truth, facts, personal liberty and the rule of law. The Board of Education election is especially important: please, no book bans in Meriden!

Jocelyn Linnekin, Meriden

Simplifying services


I am writing this letter in strong support of Mike Cardona for city clerk. I have known Mike for many years. Ever since being elected, and even before then, he has been a strong and passionate advocate for Meriden residents. He has always been transparent and accessible; two traits I value and think he will bring to the role of city clerk. It is important we have a city clerk who will prioritize efficiency by streamlining and simplifying services. For me, that candidate is Mike Cardona. Please join me on Tuesday, November 7th in supporting Mike Cardona for city clerk.

John Battista, Meriden

Expressing outrage


There is conversation most days on a Meriden centric Facebook page, expressing outrage over the desecration of the War Monuments by litter left by panhandlers. Republican candidate Sean McDonald has made this his battle cry. I just wish Sean McDonald and others expressed the same outrage when Donald Trump calls disabled and deceased veterans suckers and fools. And instructs his staff not to invite disabled veterans to his events. Let’s honor veterans by, yes, keeping the Monuments pristine, but more importantly providing the services necessary to help those veterans still damaged by their service. Vote Democratic, Local, State, Federal.

Peter N. Hargett, Meriden 

Two faced!


Republican politicians attacked the police contract, the firefighters contract, and the teachers contract. Now they claim to support public safety and education. How two-faced! Please support the straight-talking, highly competent Democratic slate: Kevin Scarpati for mayor; Mike Cardona for city clerk; Mike Rohde, Chad Cardillo, Sonya Jelks, Krystle Blake, Kirsten Misner and Joe Scaramuzzo for council; Nickimmy Hayes, Diadette Hernandez, Eni Lopez-Riddle and Maria Scarlett for Board of Education.

Vote for the A-Team on Row A!

Craig Hanson, Meriden

Dire straits


Several decades ago, our town had plenty of assets, including a top-tier public education system and our Community Pool. These  assets drew families to our town, which increased our population. Our tax base increased, as businesses were attracted by the quality of our community, allowing more revenue to be raised without burdening individuals. Now, we have a pool growing weeds, dangerous streets and sidewalks and public school system is in dire straits, and families are leaving in masses.

Republican leadership has failed us, and Riley O’Connell has provided detailed plans of his strategy to save our town and our future.

Brian J Miller, AICP, Wallingford

Fiscal leadership


One of Wallingford’s mayoral candidates has continuously misrepresented Wallingford’s budgeting process. 

He states the Town overestimates expenses, thereby overtaxing.  He is wrong. His wish list of budget ideas is farcical and dangerous. Proper budgeting provides honest and transparent estimation of resources required to render services determined by elected officials. Favorable results may be used for future tax stabilization, which Wallingford does, resulting in one of the lowest tax rates in the state and strong financial position.  If I were a Wallingford resident, I would choose Vinny Cervoni to continue providing mature, responsible, level-headed and honest fiscal leadership to Wallingford taxpayers.    

James Bowes, former Wallingford town comptroller, Southington 



I support Tony Martorelli as a candidate for the Meriden Board of Education. Tony is a lifelong resident of Meriden and is invested in the success of the Meriden Public School system. Tony demonstrates his devoted leadership, by interacting and helping students. Tony will continue to give every student the opportunities to succeed. 

I can attest to Tony’s character, enthusiasm and his commitment to the city of Meriden. Tony’s passion and vision to ensure a brighter future for the children of Meriden makes him an asset to the Meriden Board of Education. Results matter, please vote 6B on November 7th.

Michele Wasef, Meriden



As a state legislator, I have had the privilege of working with City Councilors Mike Cardona, Mike Rohde, Sonya Jelks, Krystle Blake, and previously, Chad Cardillo. We have collaborated to bring hundreds of millions in state grants to Meriden, supporting education, economic development, roads, senior services, health programs, and much more. These are dollars that Meriden taxpayers send to Hartford, and we bring this money back home! I look forward to Democratic council candidates Joe Scaramuzzo and Kirsten Misner joining this impressive team. Please also support Democrats Maria Scarlett, Nickimmy Hayes, Diadette Hernandez, and Eni Lopez-Riddle for Board of Education.

State Rep. Hilda Santiago, Meriden



As Election Day approaches, I write in support of the Row A candidates for mayor, Town Council, Board of Education, and city clerk. Our state delegation requires strong partnership with our local leaders, and each of our Row A candidates has a demonstrated commitment to Meriden. On November 7, a vote for Mayor Scarpati and Row A is a vote to keep our city moving forward. 

Jack Fazzino, Meriden

Past performance


I am proud to endorse the Democratic incumbents and a former city councilor for the City Council: Area 1, Sonya Jelks; Area 3, Krystal Blake; and At Large, Michael Rohde and Chad Cardillo.  Their past performances prove how important and effective they are to the functioning of the City Council.  I am particularly excited about endorsing Area 2 candidate, Joseph Scaramuzzo, and Area 4 candidate, Kirsten Misner.  They are both newcomers to the local political scene, and their enthusiasm and impressive credentials guarantee they will be excellent additions to the City Council.  

Bruce A. Fontanella, Meriden 



The other day a friend and I were discussing the Wallingford Town Council race and she asked, “are you sure you want to do this?”  My resounding answer was YES!  I love Wallingford.  This town is where I've chosen to live and raise my family.  I'm excited for the opportunity to use my skills and abilities to help grow our town for the future.

Our town is facing many challenges.  We need to address years of neglect to our infrastructure.  We need to make a decision on the renovation of our high schools and address the needs of the middle and elementary schools.  We need to upgrade our town’s technology and processes to make living and doing business in Wallingford easier and more attractive.  In order to do this, we need to invest tax dollars wisely. 

I have the experience and skills that will help the Wallingford Town Council address these challenges effectively and efficiently.  I am a certificated public account with over 20 years of experience focused on taxation and audits.  My career has centered on transparency, accountability, and efficiency.  I have developed, analyzed, and managed budgets for numerous projects and am comfortable asking the tough questions.  In addition to my day job, I opened and ran a small business in town from 2018 - 2023. This gave me the opportunity to meet many of our wonderful residents and help other newer businesses going through the start-up process.  I am also a proud member of the Wallingford Library Board. The library is one of Wallingford's crown jewels and its offerings and impact to our community is tremendous.

I am committed to working hard for the people of Wallingford and bringing accountability, transparency, and efficiency to our local government. To learn more about me and my campaign, go to KristiDoerrForWallingford.com.

Kristi J. Doerr, Wallingford 

Outstanding group 


I am Dan Brunet, Minority Leader of the City Council. The local Republican party has put together an outstanding group of candidates and we need these individuals elected that bring back prioritizing our core responsibilities as City officials.

The focus on Public Safety, Education, Economic Development, Parks and recreation activities will be paramount unencumbered by special interests; we need a new majority to make this happen. Vote for the entire team of Area 1- Isabel Rosa-Kaiser, Area 2-Dan Zabrowski, Area 3-Mike Zakrzewski, Area 4-Mike Carabetta, At-Large Sean McDonald and Elain Cariati. 

Dan Brunet, Meriden 

Young leader 


Sometimes we find a young leader who is bright, mature and ready to be mayor at a young age. We have the nearby example of Ben Florsheim, mayor of Middletown, who ran at age 27 and, using a collaborative approach, achieved over $1 billion in grand list growth, and a property tax rate down from 36.0 mills when he took office to 28.3 today. 

In Wallingford, we have another bright, young leader in Riley O’Connell, running at age 27 like Florsheim, whose goal is building Wallingford into a sustainable, affordable community. Let’s support Riley and his team on Row A!

State Rep. Mary Mushinsky, Wallingford



My background is not just one of being a retired police officer; I was also president of the Southington Police Union. I understand the plight of line officers, the struggle to keep good officers under our town banner and shield them from the internal politics that often accompany positions of power inside the police department. Ensuring fairness, honesty, and transparency are not always popular when you are union president. Vendettas, career aspirations, and conspiracies  with management are toxic to any organization. Sometimes those spill over after retirement, with retributions not yet fulfilled.

I hoped that when I retired, I could participate in town government. Vicky Triano thought so too. She spoke to me about serving on the Town Council and not the Police Commission. It wasn’t long before I realized why. I was told that if I ran for Town Council, I would need to support a certain person for town manager when our current manager hadn’t even announced retirement yet. I was aghast — they wanted an anointment. How could they make this decision without input from the minority party or other town leaders or town staff? What about a proper search for the best candidate? All these were off the table. Not only was their treatment of women poor, their egotism and arrogance was without shame. I needed to leave.

I joined Team Southington because the Southington Democrats want to make Southington a better place to live. Town before party people before politics. 

Stephen Salerno, Southington 

Singular devotion 


In one-hundred words (or less), I am writing to endorse Michael Votto’s re-election to Wallingford’s Board of Education. As a former student and mentee of Mr. Votto, I implore the town’s constituents to recognize the invaluable asset already working on behalf of your community’s youth.

While a teacher, he had a singular devotion to his craft that was of tremendous influence to countless young people. As a public servant, he has demonstrated his still unwavering vision and commitment to student achievement. I urge each of the readers to re-elect him on November 7.

Christopher Landino, Bridgeport



During Wednesday evening's mayoral debate, Vincent Cervoni clearly displayed that he is not a leader. He let his emotional friends and supporters continuously interrupt and disrespect Riley O'Connell during the closing statement. If Vincent was a true leader, he would have stepped in to quiet down the audience, as Riley did.

This was truly a simple way for Vincent to show his supposed leadership and any ounce of integrity he claims he has. He failed the test. He wouldn't recognize leadership even if it knocked on his front door. Vote Riley O'Connell for strong leadership in Wallingford. 

Wendy Liseo, Wallingford


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