Letter to the Editor

Enfield - posted Sep, 03 2013

It is interesting how things happen when you least expect it. That is exactly how I became a candidate for Council-at-Large. The Republican caucus was one step in the municipal election process, as is the primary election on Sept. 10. My experience in public office has been focused on the Enfield school system for the last four years. During that time I have strived to negotiate fair labor contracts, enhance the elementary school reorganization, maintain and reinstate needed successful programs, and make sure both staff and facilities are properly utilized. Enfield is in the process of creating a secondary school that meets the needs of our 21st-century learners. The high school consolidation project is the most significant project to happen for Enfield’s families in decades and I have been a strong and willing partner on this major opportunity. I am proud my neighbors, the Board of Education and the Town Council had the wisdom to move forward with this initiative, which not only meets the need of our students, but also ensured that the town will avoid millions of dollars in fines. It has been suggested the primary on Sept. 10 is solely a vote about taxes. It is not. Certainly managing the Town’s budget is critical, when growth is minimal, services need to be provided and contractual requirements need to be met, but I know the Town Council and Board of Education members have been prudent keeping a tight rein on our expenditures. This year we had a tax increase. As much as there are some who voted NO – they were also the same people who “added” large dollars to line items. They had the wisdom to know what the Town needed, but not the courage to support it. Like my primary slate colleagues, Greg Stokes, Carol Hall, and Scott Kaupin, I believe fiscal responsibility in a local government means maintaining a climate for positive economic growth, and making sure we are developing a community that consistently attracts new residents and families. This thread of “spend wisely” is constantly talked about in social media chats and town community conversations. We have heard many times that spending must be a balance between Town and School needs, and Town growth. I have had a reputation of being vigilant questioning and pushing back on unfunded mandates that do nothing more than increase budgets. I have been a true advocate for Enfield on the Board of Education. I view serving on the Town Council as an opportunity to continue to use my skills to better our community. Public service is never for personal gain. It is respectful and honorable work. The Republican primary on September 10th is about public service, trust and dedication to our children and neighbors of Enfield. My commitment to Enfield and the commitment of Scott Kaupin, Carol Hall and Greg Stokes is proven. Please vote Line B on September 10th and continue having leaders that will give you good stewardship and pride you expect from Enfield’s elected officials. Donna Szewczak Current Board Of Education member Enfield

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