Dear Wiltonians,

Will you vote for Wilton on November 5?

My name is Scott Lawrence. I’ve lived in Wilton with my wife Alicia and two boys since 2010. I am currently chair of Wilton’s Planning and Zoning Commission, where I’ve been a member since 2015. I also served on the Zoning Board of Appeals and have had the privilege of moderating Wilton’s Annual Town Meeting in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

It’s election time for Wilton. I’m stepping down from town responsibilities at the end of November and I’m not running for anything. But I do have skin in the game of wanting Wilton to be the best it can be. So, I’ll ask again:

Will you vote for Wilton on November 5?

What does that mean? It means casting your vote in the Wilton town elections on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019.  Why? Because your vote matters to Wilton. Much more so than most of us realize, if historical turnout is any guide. Let me explain:

You are voting on November 5 for a government of Wilton’s people, for Wilton’s people, by Wilton’s people. In contrast to state and federal elections involving diluted representation in far-flung districts, this election is exclusively about Wilton candidates running for Wilton government. Wilton is run by local volunteers–elected and appointed–working hand-in-hand with dedicated and expert town staff. There are around 170 elected and appointed board spots being filled by people just like you. They are your neighbors. Your colleagues. Your coaches. Your friends. They are Wilton’s government. Voting is your basic participation in Wilton’s remarkable community government.

You are voting on November 5 to voice your views on issues having direct impact on your daily lives–with maximum effect. Town government is the most intimate and responsive form of government we have. Try changing state or federal law some time. In contrast, changing Wilton policy is a hands-on and results-oriented experience for the Wilton public. Do you care about your home’s value? The condition of the roads? Town budgets? Your property taxes? How your kids are educated? How your town center looks and grows? Where you can live, work, shop and play in Town? Then you can talk to town staff, email a board, attend and speak at meetings, and help develop policy in real-time. Wondering how to respond forcefully as a community to “big” state and federal policy challenges, like school regionalization, pension funding, fiscal and zoning mandates, taxes, tolls, trains and traffic, and similar issues? Then look no further than Wilton’s demonstrated bipartisan leadership at the regional and state levels on “big” issues like these this year. That leadership started at the local level with elected and community leaders working assiduously together–across party lines–to fight for better policies for Wilton. Your vote symbolizes your connection to that community leadership, your belief in its bipartisan effectiveness and your pride in its success.

You are voting on November 5 to show interest in and support for Wilton’s volunteers and their efforts. People just like you spend ever-increasing amounts of time–often hundreds of hours each year–away from work, family and friends as volunteers on boards trying to make Wilton better for everyone. Aggregated, this represents millions of dollars’ worth of volunteer work and expertise given to the Town each year. This happens at appreciable personal cost for many volunteers in today’s world of higher living costs, longer workdays, tougher commutes and a palpably volatile economic and political environment. Now add social media’s cacophony, which can really hit home at times. Voting recognizes how hard the candidates are working for Wilton–for all of us. High voter turnout shows a Wilton community that cares and is vested in its volunteer leaders and their efforts. That support matters a lot, especially when everyone’s a little bleary-eyed at 10:30 p.m. on the third board meeting in February . . .

You are voting on November 5 to show your commitment to helping make Wilton the best it can be. Your vote on November 5 is an investment in Wilton. It only costs 10 minutes, but generates enormous returns to you, the candidates and the Town. Please do not forego or forget. Please do not assume that staying home signals “everything’s fine,” or that others will vote your views in your stead, or that your vote doesn’t count. It doesn’t, they won’t, and it does–your vote really does matter.

Let’s vote for Wilton on November 5!

See you at the polls!

Scott Lawrence