Showmanship is not leadership. Ken Flatto resigned his elected seat as first selectman in April 2011 to join the Malloy administration. In a show of hands to take his place, only Mike Tetreau raised his hand claiming he was ready to lead the town in Flatto's place. I objected to the Republican leadership’s foolish political resistance to his swift appointment and felt Tetreau should be given the chance he requested.

Ultimately, Tetreau got the appointment to finish Flatto's term and went on to win election months later. But even before Tetreau won election in November of 2011, the very same Republicans who objected to his appointment quickly validated Tetreau's approach to leadership is nothing more than showmanship.

Tetreau's first major act of showmanship as leadership was to claim the Metro Center budget would be overspent. Tetreau claimed that unless the Republicans, who controlled both the Board of Finance and the RTM at the time, give him more money to spend the town would get sued. By inference and innuendo Ken Flatto was at fault; Tetreau was here to save the day. The press, and all but a few astute Republicans, bought it hook line and sinker, too.

What Tetreau did not tell anyone in the summer of 2011 was that the reason he really wanted more money was that his team had authorized the cleanup of the site to residential standards instead of commercial standards as originally proposed. Cleanup to residential standards requires more time and money. And while I like the idea that the site is cleaner than it would have been, I am incensed that Team Tetreau spent our money just to help the property owner one day build residential rather than commercial buildings at the Metro Center.

Showmanship is not leadership. Do not be fooled again — by either side .

Jim Brown

Fairfield