First Selectman Steven N. Wawruck seeking re-election
By Colin Rajala - Staff Writer
Windsor Locks - posted Thu., Mar. 21, 2013
It seems that it was only yesterday you were talking politics with friends or family and reading up on the candidates to make an informed decision on who to vote for in the past year's elections. Now that process is already beginning for 2013, as contenders are announcing their candidacy for the Nov. 5 elections and beginning to formulate their platforms.
Windsor Locks has been run in familiar fashion over the past seven years, with First Selectman Steven N. Wawruck serving four consecutive terms at the helm of the town. Wawruck recently told the Democratic Town Committee that he would like its endorsement to run for a fifth consecutive term in November.
“There were a few things that needed to be done here in town when I first started out running for first selectman, and I wanted to concentrate on growing jobs here in Windsor Locks,” Wawruck said. “I wanted to stabilize the tax base itself with a good partnership with the private entities, which is not the easiest thing to achieve, especially in the economic climate we’ve experienced over the last three to four years. I wanted to look at the infrastructure needs of the town, address roads, grounds and buildings over a period of time, which we have been doing; and the other thing was a good partnership with the Board of Education to collaborate on services and partner in making the school system and town a better place to live.”
During his announcement to the committee, he also informed the group that he wanted former first selectman Edward Ferrari to be his running mate and serve as second selectman. Ferrari served as the town’s first selectman for two terms, from 1989 through 1993, and an additional two terms from 1999-2003. Wawruck said that Ferrari has been a confidant for many years and he could go to Ferrari to ask questions and discuss issues and Ferrari would give his take on what course of action or how to proceed and never let Wawruck go into an issue blindly. Wawruck said he believes that Ferrari will bring a wealth of knowledge and energy to the ticket.
“Ed and his wife, Sandy, were both campaign managers for my first election, and they believed in what I was trying to come forward with; they supported me through that first election,” Wawruck said. “They went out and helped me stay on course and on track to get through the election process because I had never gone through one before. I was a novice and they were teaching me how to stay focused. I owe everything being in office to Ed and Sandy because of their perseverance and keeping me on task. I fully believe that when we are elected in November we will have a good two years moving Windsor Locks forward and we will see the rebirth of our Main Street.”
If Wawruck secures a fifth term, he would like to see three main projects through to the "finish line," as he said. He acknowledges there is still work to be done in regard to the revitalization of the town center, the restoration of the historic train station, returning the current train platform to the center of town and improving the quality of life for residents with the rebirth of Main Street, and he would like to see them through to their completion. Wawruck noted that the projects are beginning to come to fruition, with new key developments in the revitalization project.
Wawruck said that the town has received word that the AMTRAK president has signed an agreement to sell the historic train station to the town for $1; it is estimated to be worth $50,000. The documents for the transfer are being drawn up for the town to review and approve. The architectural firm hired by the town has been given permission by AMTRAK to apply for necessary permits to begin the engineering study of the building.
In another development, the town has received support from Gov. Dannel Malloy and a commitment from the state Department of Transportation to allow the DOT to utilize state resources to conduct the necessary environment assessment for the platform relocation to the center of town, a test that Wawruck said would likely be too expensive for the town to afford. The DOT has also been granted permission to seek the Federal Railroad Administration’s approval for the move to occur.
“With these good ideas and these projects that have come to fruition, people see that I do stay the course, and I would hope they would give me a couple of years with another term to further those efforts,” Wawruck said. “I am going to continue the hard work that I’ve done in the past. I want to be there for the citizens of Windsor Locks to ensure the quality of life here is the same or much better than what it currently is. I’m not looking to cut services; I want to make it a better place.”