Windsor Locks candidates looking for progress
By Jennifer Coe
Windsor Locks - posted Thu., Oct. 24, 2013
With Nov. 5 right around the corner, candidates are busy getting the word out about what is important to them.
Steve Wawruck will be running to secure his fifth term as First Selectman. He has been actively pursuing the revitalization of Main Street, the improvement of city roads and securing a new train platform. Wawruck himself is a Windsor Locks native who remembers when business was booming downtown, and seeks to see it restored again. “I will continue the dialogue with the State Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Community Development (DECD) to bring the Route 20/75 exit ramp project to fruition,” said Wawruck. “I will ensure that the relocation of the Windsor Locks train platform is still in the forefront of discussions as, we towns fortunate to have stations on the corridor, capitalize on these growth opportunities.” Wawruck feels that “both of these projects prove that public funding spurs private development and serves as the catalyst to ensure that our Grand list will grow to ensure stabilization of our tax base.”
Ed Ferrari is running for Selectman. “I have been active in Windsor Locks government for the past 30 years,” said Ferrari. He served as First Selectman for 8 years and then as a member of the Board of Selectmen for 6 years. He has also served as a Fire Commissioner and as a member of the Water Pollution Control Authority. Like Wawruck, Ferrari would like to see Main Street’s revitalization continue in the right direction. “I will continue to work towards stabilizing our tax rate by encouraging new businesses to open on Main Street,” he said. “The new train station is crucial to this initiative.” Ferrari feels the “Democrats offer a clear vision for the future of Windsor Locks. We have accomplished much but there is more work to be done.”
Running against Steve Wawruck for the job of First Selectman is Republican candidate Dennis Gragnolati. Gragnolati is a retired educator and graduate of Windsor Locks High School. He has served 3 terms as a Selectman and 14 years on the Fire Commission. Gragnolati says that if elected he would like to “review town operations to improve cooperation between town agencies and nearby towns to improve efficiency and eliminate unneeded duplication of services and equipment so that services can be maintained or improved without tax increases,” he said. “As part of this I would, with the input from residents and town officials, develop a long range plan to address the needs of the town.” Gragnolati would like to see communication improve between town officials and residents by regularly publishing a town-wide newsletter. “I am deeply committed to improving the quality of life in WL,” said Gragnolati. “I believe that receiving and carefully considering the suggestions and comments of a wide range of people we will better be able to address our current and future problems and concerns.”
Seeking reelection to the Board of Education, Scott Storms would like to make sure that students get the “needed career and college level skills” they need to make it successfully in the competitive work environment. “I would like to support the ongoing mission of the Windsor Locks Public Schools in developing students as life-long learners and responsible, contributing members of our community and an every changing global society,” said Storms. Storms has served as the Board of Education Chairperson for the last 2 years.
Patricia L. King is running for Board of Education again. Her long career with the Board has spanned 13 years, 10 of them as Chairperson, serving the town. King says she would like to “continue to support the progress we have made in improving our schools.” She would like to see more movement toward implementing the Common Core standards and writing and implementing policies. “I love our town and wish to continue to so support improvements in our school system for the children - our future citizens,” she said. “I have experience is all aspects of leadership and management including fiscal, human resource, long range planning and organizational skills.”
Joseph DeLisle, the tax collector in Windsor Locks since 2009 is seeking re-election and running against petitioning candidate Daniel Walsh. “Since taking office, my goals have been to reign in delinquent accounts, modernize the office technologically, and provide a positive customer service experience for all our customers,” said Delisle. “Each year, I have collected more in delinquent, back taxes than the Board of Finance allocated for,” he said. Delisle has also focused on modernizing the Tax Office by implementing the town’s first online bill look up and payment system.
Running against Delisle as a petitioning candidate is Daniel Walsh. Walsh has a 25-year career in the military and has a strong financial background. He has spent 10 years as a budget analyst in aircraft maintenance. “I am dedicated to the Windsor Locks community,” said Walsh. “I am an active member of the Windsor Locks Veterans’ counsel, have many years in the Gensi Viola American Legion Post #3, a lifetime member of the Air Force Sergeants Association, and a member of the Disabled Americans Veterans’ Organization to name a few.” Walsh feels his military career reflects his proven leadership ability and lives in town with his family.
Running for Board of Education is Gerard Weatherby. Weatherby has a career in the US Navy and has taught at the Naval Submarine School. He has also taught at local high schools including New Britain, Rocky Hill and Windsor Locks. “My two highest priorities are to provide students with the opportunity for meaningful success by insisting the district maintain rigorous educational standards,” he said. “Wasting money on fad programs and gadgets benefits neither student nor taxpayer.” Weatherby feels students should be able “to start service or manufacturing careers without having to go to college and incur burdensome student debt.” Alternatively, students should be sufficiently prepared to attend college for the high paying specialty careers.
Also running for Board of Education is Andrew Kulas. Michael Russo is running for Selectman.
Denise Balboni, longtime Windsor Locks Selectman, is running against Daniel W. Squires for the position of Treasurer.
Windsor Locks voters may vote at the following places; District 1: Windsor Locks Town Office Building, 50 Church Street and District 2: Windsor Locks High School, 58 South Elm Street.