by marcia chambers | May 19, 2013 9:10 pm
UPDATE: The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) last week adopted a $99.317 million school and town budget for the 2013-14 fiscal year, after the Republican side of the aisle raised last-minute objections. Today the Board of Finance (BOF) reviewed and approved the budget and set the mill rate at 25.59, a 2.6 percent increase over last year.
The BOF final budget meeting took place at Branford High School where Finance Director Jim Finch provided the BOF with an overview. At the meeting, the BOF learned that the town is expected to lose about $163,000 in expected state funds. Finch offered various adjustments to offset the loss, which if the BOF accepts “will allow the mill rate to fall to a level pursuant to the RTM reductions.”
by marcia chambers | May 13, 2013 8:26 am | Comments (1)
Anthony “Unk” DaRos is ending an overall 12-year run as the town’s full-time chief executive and administrative officer. But don’t expect him to slow down.
“You are going to see the most active lame duck you have ever seen,” he declared.
In an exclusive interview, he publicly confirmed for the first time that he will retire from government life when his term ends this November.
He reflected on his years in office during a 50-minute interview Friday. DaRos, who is 70, plans to tell his Town Hall staff, department heads and other employees at their weekly Monday morning meeting that he will not seek a fourth two-year term in the upcoming November election.
As first selectman he oversees the day-to-day operation of town government and all town departments. Overall he has served 12 years as first selectman, beginning with his first six year stint in 1997 when he ran for the town’s top job on the Democratic ticket.
by Diana Stricker | Mar 8, 2013 10:17 am | Comments (1)
How does an unaffiliated voter navigate the political process to become a volunteer member of boards and commissions in Branford?
Stony Creek resident Linda Reed (pictured) asked that question Wednesday night when the Board of Selectmen (BOS) appointed someone else to fill the seat she held on the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA). Reed was appointed as an alternate unaffiliated member to the ZBA in June to fill a vacancy created when alternate Christine Ciociola, a Democrat, stepped up to full membership. Both Reed and Ciociola’s positions expired Oct. 31, but no action was taken to fill the seats until Wednesday.
by Diana Stricker | Feb 25, 2013 9:35 am | Comments (4)
With a few soft-spoken words, the race for first selectman in Branford is off and running, far in advance of the November election.
“I’m a candidate for first selectman,” said Jacey Wyatt, (pictured) as participants introduced themselves Thursday at a Planning and Zoning workshop.
It’s no surprise that Wyatt, a businesswoman and self-proclaimed “super model,” is seeking the town’s top office. She predicted she would run this year when she made her first foray into politics two years ago. She ran for tax collector and for a seat on the Representative Town Meeting in 2011, but didn’t win either position. In the race for tax collector she received 2611 votes with the incumbent, Joanne Cleary, taking 4108.
by marcia chambers | Dec 18, 2012 2:21 pm | Comments (2)
The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) last week learned about an unusual set of shoreline homeowner issues created by two major storms in a short period of time.
Janice Plaziak, the town’s engineer, asked members to approve language changes to amend the town’s flood plain ordinance in order to enable families whose homes were seriously damaged by storms Irene and Sandy to apply for a $30,000 grant to help elevate their homes. Click here to read about the storms.
by Diana Stricker | Nov 2, 2012 8:28 am
Town officials are taking firm steps to ensure that Branford voters will be able to cast their ballots as usual on Tuesday, despite the havoc caused by Superstorm Sandy.
“No matter what, election day is going to happen,” said Branford Town Clerk Marianne Kelly.
First Selectman Anthony “Unk” DaRos echoed her words, saying “We are having an election, no matter what.” He told the Eagle that voters will vote in their districts, in the same buildings they have cast ballots in the past.
by Sally E. Bahner | Oct 21, 2012 10:24 pm | Comments (1)
A group of local and national politicos rallied in front of Branford Town Hall Saturday in support of Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful Chris Murphy, focusing on his stand on women’s issues.
They arrived on two buses covered with slogans as part of a women-driven sweep that included Norwich, Fairfield, and West Hartford, in addition to Branford. They were welcomed by about 100 supporters who came out on lovely sunny day to listen to their message.
by marcia chambers | Sep 27, 2012 1:21 pm | Comments (1)
As Democratic majority leader of the Representative Town Meeting (RTM), Anthony Giardiello had a perfect perch from which to view Branford’s sometimes stormy legislative politics.
Now he has resigned from the RTM, where he has served for nearly 12 years, because he has moved to a new home in East Haven.
For about five of those 12 years, he sat in seat #1 as the Branford party’s majority leader.
Branford approved the creation of an RTM in 1958 in order to provide the town “with a modern, workable form of government, recognizing that the public Town Meeting has largely become ineffective because of increasing population and the complexity of governmental problems,” the town charter says.
by Diana Stricker | Sep 7, 2012 7:56 am | Comments (1)
It’s a new era for Branford’s municipal meetings.
Wednesday’s agenda for the Board of Selectmen (BOS) was typical. Members approved the purchase of a bucket truck for public works; granted shell fishing leases; gave their blessing for a wedding at the gazebo in Stony Creek, and argued about farm tax status.
But it was the location that cast an aura of uniqueness—- it was the first BOS meeting in the state-of-the-art community room at the new Fire Headquarters at 45 North Main St.
by marcia chambers | Aug 15, 2012 9:20 am | Comments (2)
Democratic Congressman Chris Murphy and Republican Linda McMahon, a former wrestling executive, trounced their competitors, Susan Bysiewicz and Chris Shays in Tuesday’s Branford primary. Voter turnout was in the low 20 percent.
Town Clerk Marianne Kelly says that typically voter turnout in primaries hovers between 28 and 33 percent. Not this year, she noted.
Murphy, who gives up his seat in the 5th District, and McMahon, who lost the U.S. Senate race to Richard Blumenthal two years ago, will face each other in the Nov. 6th election. They are vying for the U.S. Senate seat of retiring U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman.