FAIRFIELD, Conn. – To help our readers prepare for Election Day, The Daily Fairfield sent five questions to each of the candidates on the November ballot. These answers were submitted by Bob Greenberger, a Democrat running for the Representative Town Meeting in District 8.
Why should people vote for you?
As a 19-year resident, I have come to love this town and truly believe in giving back. It's why I have been active as a volunteer since 1999, serving on the Parking Authority, Cable Advisory Council and Greater Bridgeport Transportation Agency in addition to 2+ terms on the RTM. I care passionately about keeping this town affordable while retaining our quality education and public services.
What are the biggest issues facing Fairfield?
While many others complain about our debt, it’s manageable, so the bigger issues are getting the town boards to be in better communication with one another so decisions are made in the context of what is best for the entire town. We have to carefully prioritize our maintenance needs while keeping an eye on improving programs for all ages, acquiring more open space, and managing growth with a plan similar to the Commerce Drive public/private developments.
Is Fairfield going in the right direction? If you are an incumbent, what were your biggest achievements? If you are a challenger, what has your opponent done wrong while in office?
A public dialogue began in the spring and needs to continue. We need more civility across the board, more tolerance and acceptance of different backgrounds, socioeconomic conditions, and points of view. The incumbents in my district have proven to represent the views of only a few while casting votes irregardless of fact, just a negative ideology. They’ve also done little specific to the district or town. This needs to stop and all views accepted.
What would you do to involve your constituents in your decision-making process?
Neighborhood meetings over the years are great ideas but have usually been poorly attended, so new methods of communication need to be created, be it a website, Facebook page, or emailed newsletter in addition to public meetings.
How can Fairfield avoid another Metro Center, i.e., a project that goes severely over budget? What will you do to prevent it? Be specific.
I already stressed the need for more Big Picture planning, placing projects in context, and think that will help. Additionally, the RTM is the last check and balance, so representatives needed to ask the hard questions earlier and ask for more regular updates on major projects, perhaps any that cost over a stipulated dollar amount. Most town projects come in on or under budget, but we can certainly and should do better.
To reach Greg Canuel, email firstname.lastname@example.org.