Letter : Norwalk needs decisive leadership
Published 2:00 pm, Friday, October 28, 2016
I attended a debate the other night between State Sen. Bob Duff and his challenger, Greg Ehlers. The contrast between the two men could not have been more pronounced. Duff, who has been sitting in the legislature for 14 years, was his predictable self, trying to sound optimistic while justifying poor results and blaming long-gone Republicans and the great recession from nine years ago. His message was essentially that we’re doing just fine, so let’s stay the course, and that was quite depressing,
Ehlers offered a different vision, calling for a change in leadership for the big issues affecting Norwalkers and our state. He said decisive action was needed in several areas:
1. The Education Cost Sharing formula must change without delay, and it is the duty of the Norwalk delegation to press on. This echoes State Rep. Wilms’ position and, with Ehlers, he would have a strong ally. Duff has never made a proposal for change, and he refused to help Wilms last year when Wilms tried to introduce legislation.
2. Norwalk should challenge findings by the State Department of Transportation on the Walk Bridge. Ehlers agrees with Reps. Wilms and Lavielle that a fixed option should be vetted more thoroughly. We still don’t know where Duff stands and that is just unacceptable. We deserve transparency.
3. Norwalk deserves predictability on its funding from the state. We need legislators who will stop gimmicky tricks to hide deficits and come back later with cuts and new taxes, like the proposed mileage tax. Ehlers also supports implementing spending caps to control spending.
4. Businesses must be allowed to create jobs again in Connecticut. Implement a pro-growth agenda instead of buying off a few major corporations. Payoffs are not wins, contrary to what Duff said. They are at best necessary evils at the expense of taxpayers and small-business owners.
Those were the messages and the energy that I have seen resonate with so many Norwalkers. Connecticut can once again thrive, and Norwalk, with a true champion by its side, can finally be treated fairly by the state. Get to know Greg Ehlers and vote for him on Nov. 8.