Fairfield First Selectman candidate: Mike Tetreau
Mike Tetreau is running for this third term as First Selectman of Fairfield, a role he’s served in since 2011.
Tetreau originally got involved in local politics out of a desire to give back to his hometown.
“I grew up here,” he explained. “For me, it’s really about community service.”
In his eight years as First Selectman, Tetreau has dealt with a host of challenges, including public safety crises Hurricane Sandy and the Sandy Hook school shooting, as well as fiscal troubles such as state aid cuts and the departure of General Electric.
Tetreau is proud that despite these challenges, Fairfield has managed to remain a leader in business, education and sustainability under his leadership.
This summer, Fairfield’s Public Works pile has emerged front and center in politics, with Republican candidates attacking Tetreau for his handling of the issue.
Tetreau emphasized that public safety is his number one priority, and that he has been working diligently in the last few months to ensure the safety of Fairfield’s residents.
First Selectman candidate
Current job: First Selectman/Town of Fairfield
Education: Roger Ludlowe High School, Princeton University
The most important issue in this election: Keep taxes down and improve traffic - Financial strength is key to Fairfield’s future. I have managed the town budget at 1 percent growth - lowest in 25 years. I have lowered long term liabilities and maintained our AAA bond rating. I have initiated plans to improve traffic flow on Black Rock Turnpike & Post Road including TOD developments to keep cars off the roads.
Other issues: Investing in education is key to Fairfield’s value - our schools are the #1 reason people move to Fairfield. I have put a priority on security and health in our schools. I will invest in programs for seniors and expanded Senior Tax Relief despite the state eliminating funding.
Family: My family has deep roots in Fairfield. My parents created a wonderful, loving home environment for my brothers and I. My father was a beloved football coach, and athletics were a big part of our family activities. I’m recently married for the first time to the love of my life, Giulia Nesi, who spent her childhood summers here. And we are the proud parents of a 4lb rescue Chihuahua who tries to rule our in-town home!
Previous elected offices, community group affiliations: I have previously served on the Town Plan & Zoning Commission, the RTM and the Board of Finance. I have served on the Board of Directors for the American Red Cross chapter. I volunteered as a Pop Warner Football coach.
Campaign website: www.tetreau2019.com
However, he is deeply disappointed with members of the Republican party who he believes have taken advantage of the issue with a political agenda.
“I think that is frankly a horrible value set,” Tetreau said. “That’s not what Fairfield’s about, that’s not what we teach our kids.”
He called on his opponent State Rep. Brenda Kupchick to halt the involvement of outside political interests, which he sees as dangerous for the town.
“I would expect Brenda to ask them to stand down, and I would expect her to step up and be a bigger leader and think about Fairfield first, and not about politics,” Tetreau said.
Looking towards the next four years, Tetreau wants to grow the town’s commercial tax base in order to keep residential taxes from rising too much.
This, he said, needs to be done by both expanding the physical commercial area of Fairfield and making current commercial properties more productive.
If elected, he and his running mate Nancy Lefkowitz also plan to establish a human rights commission in Fairfield as the town grows more diverse.
“[This would] support our diversity and provide a structure that clearly documents that Fairfield is a welcoming community,” Tetreau said.
Other issues on Tetreau’s mind include investing in schools, mitigating traffic and keeping seniors in Fairfield. He especially wants to push the proposed senior tax relief program towards implementation.
“I’d love to see, for those seniors that qualify, that we cut their taxes in half,” Tetreau said.
Overall, Tetreau sees great things in store for Fairfield’s next four years and wants to continue leading the town into its future.
“We’ve weathered the storms, and Fairfield’s here and vibrant,” he said.