Letters to the editor: Fairfield residents share their support for local candidates
Candidates may sound the same, but are not
Everything is on the line November 3rd. Yet we’ve heard it all before. Everyone wants economic growth, good schools, safe streets — who doesn’t? But how exactly do we get there from here? State candidates may sound the same, but they are not the same.
How do we rebuild Connecticut’s economy and attract new business by defunding and disempowering our police? Nothing is possible without law and order — equal protection of ALL citizens, businesses, school safety and private property.
How do we encourage entrepreneurial growth without cutting crippling regulation and business taxes? How do we reduce property taxes and make Fairfield more affordable without substantial state bureaucratic and spending reform?
How do we have great schools if we don’t fight forced regionalization, which would usurp more taxpayer dollars and block town control over its own school policy and curricula?
How do we protect Fairfield’s diverse neighborhoods, rich historical heritage and lush natural beauty without reforming destructive 8-30g housing laws, which override our zoning laws?
Brian Farnen, running for re-election in my 132nd Assembly District, has made the most of his short first term on the state Education, Transportation and Finance Committees. As a Fairfield resident with school-age children he has lived the issues, himself. As in-house attorney for the Connecticut Green Bank he is a professional problem-solver.
Farnen is campaigning on good old-fashioned common sense reform: Re-fund the police; revise unfair 8-30g housing laws; liberate small businesses from over-taxing and regulation; restructure spending and streamline state government; oppose school regionalization; rebuild roads and rail infrastructure by utilizing low-cost federal funds and rededicating Connecticut’s leaky Transportation Fund.
Our ubiquitous State Senator, Tony Hwang (28 SD); Representative Laura Devlin (134 AD), who was instrumental in defeating the notorious Toll Bill; and newcomer Joanne Csonka (133 AD), from the town Affordable Housing Committee, are on the same page. I’d vote for all of them if I could.
Ellen Jacob, Fairfield
Carla Volpe: The candidate for progress
As a local high school student, we learn about world history, and we focus on the major events. We are in one of those events right now. History is written by the people that make it. A mass movement calling for equality and an end to prejudice has swept across our nation. This is history. History classes will study this moment. We can either pay attention and make progress, or we can turn our backs on marginalized minorities like we’ve done for so many years.
I am lucky enough to live in a school district that can afford to keep departments, while other towns have had to cut them. I remember riding the bus home one day from elementary school with an orange notice saying some extracurriculars would be cut due to budget constraints. We were the lucky ones. As a teacher, Carla Volpe has seen issues in Connecticut education, and knows how to fix them. She has inside knowledge of the education system that makes her the right candidate to fix it.
Carla Volpe will stand up for what is right, and fight for the rights of minorities in Hartford. Republican Laura Devlin, when given the option of increasing oversight and regulation over the police, she voted no (SB 380 and HB 6004). Connecticut provides great opportunities to people, but not everyone equally. When Carla Volpe sits in the State Legislature in Hartford, I am confident that Carla will do everything in her power to fight racism and xenophobia in Connecticut.
I’m a member of the next generation. I will live through the issues we are putting off fixing. Only one candidate in this race will fight for progress. That candidate is Carla Volpe. Politicians shouldn’t be writing education policy, teachers should. Carla Volpe knows the problems we face, and she knows how to solve them. I stand behind Carla Volpe not because of affiliation to a political party, but because of what she stands for; a brighter future for all of us.
Reelect Cristin McCarthy-Vahey
I write this letter in support of Cristin McCarthy Vahey, who is running for reelection as our State Representative in the 133rd district. I have known Cristin for many years personally. She is a kind, knowledgeable and can-do volunteer and local connector.
Where Cristin really shines as our representative is where she focuses her time on the long term - away from the spotlight - issues that position our state to retain and recruit businesses to Connecticut. One example is the work she has done regarding Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP) as a means to provide our long standing, dedicated, and often small family owned, Connecticut companies a way to transition themselves for future growth. Connecticut has unparalleled multi-generational manufacturing prowess. We make the things that cannot fail - jet engines, helicopters and submarines. We are respected for the quality of our workforce and the reliability of our products. There are 4,000 small and family owned companies that supply speciality parts for finished aerospace and defense products in Connecticut. Cristin understands that every company - every family - that participates in this supply chain has to feel confident in their own company's future in order for the world to feel confident in us.
Cristin McCarthy-Vahey has made a difference for Connecticut businesses in an enduring and structural way. She understands the complex issues, and dives into the nuanced deeper level solutions, always with an eye toward a brighter future of our state. Please join me in voting for her.
In support of Jennifer Leeper
I am writing in support of Jennifer Leeper’s campaign for State Representative in Connecticut District 132.
When I first met Jenn in 2019, I was immediately impressed by her credentials: she has a strong policy background, particularly in regards to education. In the months since, I’ve been continually impressed with her poise, diplomacy, and eloquence in an increasingly contentious political time and against the backdrop of nationwide public health and economic duress.
My husband and I moved to Fairfield 6 years ago--a month before our first child was born. There is a lot to love about Fairfield. I’d taught at Ludlowe High School for many year and had come to love the families I met there, the thriving downtown, and the town’s outdoor spaces. But most of all, I loved the public schools. As public school educators, my husband and I were committed to raising our children in a community that values and respects teachers while also providing rigorous, innovative education for all its children.
It’s easy to talk about “valuing education” in Fairfield. We are fortunate to have many of the resources--physical and human--required to provide excellent education. But, talking about valuing education without really understanding the work that teachers do or the challenges that schools face is meaningless. Jenn has experience on the Board of Education here in Fairfield, but she’s also spent time in schools working with students and teachers and with the state Department of Education in Hartford. Fairfield's public schools are its most valuable asset, and protecting them means hiring and retaining excellent teachers; doing that means including teachers and those who have first-hand experience in schools part of policy decisions. I trust that Jenn will represent Fairfields students, families, and teachers in Hartford with a nuanced, thoughtful, and pragmatic understanding of what is required to maintain the high standards our schools have already met while advocating for improved access and equity.
Amanda Parrish Morgan
Cristin McCarthy Vahey knows how to represent our community
We urge our fellow residents of the 133rd General Assembly District in Fairfield to re-elect Cristin McCarthy Vahey as our State Representative.
We have come to know Cristin not through politics or campaign events, but through her constant presence and leadership in our community. Whether at a school event, a PTA meeting or on the sidelines of a baseball game, Cristin’s dedication to our community is apparent because she genuinely listens to her constituents as an active part of our community. We recall one occasion in particular when, after an all-nighter working on a budget at the State Capitol in Hartford, Cristin was back in the community for little league baseball with her fellow residents the next day. Cristin represents Fairfield so well not only because she is a tireless advocate, but also because she is personally engaged in and understands the needs of our community firsthand.
Particularly during these challenging times, when we are not only facing a pandemic, but when faith in our government and our institutions is at an inflection point, we need a leader like Cristin to represent our town - someone who will work across party lines to do the right thing, in the right way, and for the right reasons.
So, please vote - and please join us in re-electing Cristin McCarthy Vahey as our State Representative for the 133rd District.
Steve and Alina Reynolds, Fairfield
Reelect Cristin McCarthy Vahey as your state representative
Cristin McCarthy Vahey is the state representative for all residents in my district. She has proven time and time again that she takes her responsibility as a legislator seriously, always listens to her constituents regardless of affiliation, learns about issues and context, connects the issues with policy and shows up to work in Hartford ready to roll up her sleeves and lean in while never forgetting her roots in social work and ministry. Her unique combination of work ethic, intelligence, humanity and emotional connection to her constituents is why I enthusiastically support Cristin’s re-election. Volunteering with Cristin for Fairfield CARES Community Coalition has allowed me to get to know her not only as a capable state legislator but also as a town resident passionate about helping our young people make healthy choices, and somehow finding the time to effectively engage and lead our town’s designated prevention council. Cristin is the real deal: a mom who fiercely and unconditionally loves her family, a professional who knows how to connect, immerse herself and distill the essence of an issue, and a volunteer who has the common good at heart and is willing to give freely of herself, her time and her talent, even when nobody's watching. I am proud to be Cristin’s constituent, fellow volunteer and friend. Please join me and re-elect Cristin as your state representative for Connecticut’s 133 District.
Cristin McCarthy Vahey for a safer Connecticut
I enthusiastically support Cristin McCarthy Vahey’s campaign for re-election as State Representative for the 133rd District.
I first met Cristin McCarthy Vahey in November 2015. I had recently moved to Fairfield and she greeted me at my polling location with a warm smile and kind words. As I became more involved in my new community, I continued to run into Cristin at meetings and events. It is clear that Cristin cares about the issues that are important to my family. She doesn’t just show up at town events, she puts her full weight behind important legislation in Hartford.
In particular, Cristin’s inspiring and consistent record of supporting gun sense legislation has been unwavering. This is an issue of importance to me. On May 4, 2000, my dear friend and college roommate died by gun suicide. Over the past twenty years, I’ve tried to honor her memory by working to create a future free of gun violence. In the aftermath of the Parkland shooting, I attended Fairfield’s first Moms Demand Action meeting and, of course, Cristin was there. It’s not surprising that Cristin has been recognized as a Moms Demand Action Gun Sense Candidate of Distinction. She helped pushed for a ban on ghost guns and safe storage. Common sense measures we can all agree on. I believe that electing policymakers like Cristin, who take concrete steps to implement stronger gun laws, will help to keep our communities safer.