Today’s NEWSFLASH is a special Election2015-themed edition.

First Selectman Candidates Face-Off Tonight

Tonight, Thurs. Oct. 22, at 7-8 p.m., the Wilton Historical Society is hosting a First Selectman Candidate Forum, in conjunction with the Wilton High School Model Congress, whose members will help quiz the candidates, Deb McFadden and Lynne Vanderslice.

Each candidate will have 10 minutes for statements. Following their remarks, members of the WHS Model Congress Club will pose questions to the candidates and run the balance of the hour-long event. WHS history teacher and club advisor Kenneth Dunaj has been working with the club to develop and practice parliamentary procedure, debate skills and bill/policy writing. The students will have their questions prepared prior to the Candidates Forum. Questions will be posed in in the following four categories: historic preservation; commerce and the Wilton economy; education; and the candidate’s vision for the future of Wilton.

Sensible Wilton Asks Board of Selectmen Candidates to Answer Questions

Sensible Wilton sent a press release announcing that the group has sent a list of questions to candidates running for Wilton’s Board of Selectmen, asking them to provide answers about “how they will lead Wilton in the future and how they will address critical issues facing the town.”

The group says answers will be posted on Sensible Wilton’s website and “will enable voters to compare and contrast where the candidates stand on these critical issues.”

They say anyone interested in receiving a copy of the candidates’ responses or being alerted when candidate responses are posted, to visit the Sensible Wilton website.

The questions posed by the group include:

  1. What is your vision of Wilton in five years? In ten years?
  2. What do you see as the most critical issues we need to address in order to remain competitive with surrounding towns?
  3. A growing number of taxpayers—including parents of current and future Miller Driscoll students– believe the $50 million renovation plan for Miller Driscoll still has many unanswered questions — wrong design for the wrong price, excess capacity, etc. How would you address this issue?
  4. Wilton’s high taxes have negatively impacted our housing market, forcing some to leave Wilton after many decades as well as driving young families to buy their first homes in surrounding communities. We know Wilton has a AAA bond rating but this does not mean we should maximize spending. What will you initiate and support to reduce taxes?
  5. Capital bonded projects have often been presented to the voters without significant analysis and deliberation or the opportunity to learn about the genuine need, actual cost (near and long term) and true financial impact of the proposal. How would you change this?
  6. What is your opinion on bonding versus pay as you go budgeting?
  7. Would you support voting on the Town and Board of Education budgets separately?
  8. Will you commit to initiate and support the process to change the town charter to eliminate the 15% rule where a proposal is approved if less than 15% of eligible voters vote?
  9. Taxpayers have to work too hard to find information that should be readily available and easily accessible—or proactively provided to them to start with. What is your opinion of the Town and schools’ transparency and how would you change it?
  10. The ability to communicate with town officials is inconsistent and sometimes difficult, i.e. not every department has a town email address they give out. Would you support that all board, commission, and committee members, as well as employees, have a town/school email address to use and share with residents who would like to contact them?
  11. Voter participation has been low and declining. What steps will you take to increase voter participation?
  12. As of October 30, 2014 there were more Unaffiliated registered voters (4,488) in Wilton than Republicans (4,314) or Democrats (3,100), yet the Wilton RTC and DTC are given the reins to select people to fill town boards, commissions and committees. Do you believe it is important to have a significant number of Unaffiliated residents involved as well? If so, what would you do to garner their involvement?

RTC has Open Spots, Chairman Looks to Find New Members

The Wilton Republican Town Committee (RTC) has current spots open on their membership and is looking for registered Republicans who are interested in being considered. Registered Republicans who would like more information or to be considered should email the RTC chair, Al Alper, vice chair, Eric Cameron, or secretary Lianne Acosta-Rua. Please include a full name, address and contact information and someone will reach out to coordinate an interview.

RTC and DTC Looking to Fill Open Positions on Town Boards and Commissions

Both the Wilton Democratic Town Committee (DTC) and Republican Town Committee (RTC) have a responsibility to recommend candidates to fill positions on various town boards and commissions.

For the DTC, nominating committee chair Paul Burnham says that while membership in the Democratic Party is always strongly preferred, it is not a prerequisite for consideration. “At this time we are interested in hearing from any Wilton resident who would be interested in serving on any of the many town commissions and committees where the members are appointed by the Board of Selectmen, rather than being elected by the voters. In particular, we are looking for individuals interested in serving on the Conservation Commission.”

Anyone interested in being considered by the DTC for these or any future positions should contact Burnham at 203.762.9000 or via email.

The RTC has openings that are becoming available shortly on the Parks and Recreation and Social Services commissions. Residents interested in serving through the RTC should send a brief resume and contact information to:  Wilton Republican Town Committee, P.O.Box 301, Wilton, CT 06897, attn. Carol Lenihan.

More information on these and all committees can be found on the town website.

As the DTC’s Burnham says, “Wilton’s greatest strength is in its volunteers. Please consider serving your Town.”