February 2024 Newsletter

Important News in Greenwich

 

 

An early Spring is on it's way, according to Punxsutawney Phil, and the Greenwich Republicans are continuing their efforts to keep Greenwich, Greenwich. 

We are just regular men and women who got involved in politics for all the right reasons. We work tirelessly to inform the public & invigorate more community members to get involved. This grassroots effort worked and helped earn a full GOP Row B sweep in November 2023. Last year was a huge success, and we plan to continue the worthwhile efforts of this RTC deep into 2024 and beyond.

Thank you to the incredibly hard-working volunteers throughout our town of Greenwich. Our results in the 2023 election have caught the eye of many neighboring Republican Town Committees.

There are some registered Republicans who are not pleased with the newfound energy and heart of the Greenwich Republicans. So many new volunteers have dedicated countless hours and tireless efforts over the past two years. Please contact our district representatives below if you would like more information.

Contact Us
 

Thanks to the incredibly hard-working volunteers throughout our town of Greenwich, we had results in the 2023 election that caught the eye of many neighboring Republican Town Committees.

  • 62% record Republican turnout in a municipal election
  • 6,900 Republicans voted
  • Our top BET and BoE candidates (David Alfano & Wendy Vizzo Walsh, Karen Kowalski) each received almost 10,000 votes. That means Unaffiliated voters turned out en masse for the RTC-endorsed ticket.

One of the defining differences between national and local elections is (typically) the low turnout in local elections (usually between 30-40% of voters). The 62% of Republicans that came out to vote in November 2023 have made us proud. All of the candidates are eternally grateful for the work that was put in by the tireless RTC and their volunteers.

 

"The D2 Republican Town Committee (RTC) members and volunteers for the caucus held on January 9th appreciate the opportunity to set the record straight regarding the multiple inaccuracies in the January 14th Greenwich Time article and address complaints made by Joe Kelly in that article."

RTC D2 Caucus was Conducted Fairly, with No Objections (GFP Group Letter)


"...We have inspired hundreds of volunteers to join in our efforts. These hard-working residents have become engaged and involved thanks to the Common-Sense beliefs and actions of this RTC. They are now the backbone of our party. Other RTCs and groups from around Connecticut and the tri-state are following our lead."

Montanaro: The Common Sense Majority has Backbone (CT Centinal)

 

The RTC will have great candidates for the house seats in the 2024 election, and we will use our robust ground game to help get them and the senate seat re-elected. The candidates will be expected to honor their endorsement by working together as a supportive unit throughout their campaigns.

Congratulations to Senator Ryan Fazio on receiving the 2023 AARP Legislative Achievement Award. We appreciate all of his efforts in Hartford, fighting the battles against many bad bills and working hard to support the people of Greenwich.

In Ryan's words: "Writing and passing historic legislation last year, S.B. 7, to strengthen oversight of our utilities and reduce long-term energy costs was something that I and my Democratic co-author are very proud of. Yet, there remains much more work to do to reduce energy costs in a state where they are far too high. I will continue to advance my larger proposal to cut our electricity bills by 10% in the short term and more in the long term. Thanks to the AARP for this recognition—and I will continue to work even harder for this cause in the future!"

Senator Fazio held a Greenwich Town Hall forum on January 24th. The largest topics of discussion were 8-30g / local zoning and the Hartford electric vehicle (EV) mandate.

 

With the new $8 million increase, CMS is now $50MM OVER the BOE's initial estimate and likely delayed. 

Despite pleas from Republicans, the Democrat-led Central Middle School Building Committee continues to show little regard for scope of budget. Two months after requesting an additional $42 million, the CMS Building Committee might be headed back to the BET for additional funding after Turner Construction, the project's construction manager, revealed a new whopping estimate of $120 million. Here's a timeline so we can follow the escalation of this project: 

  • Spring 2022: BOE estimate $70 million. BET approves unanimously 12-0. 
  • October 2023: CMS Building Committee provides an inflation-adjusted estimate of $112 million. BET approves 8-4. 
  • January 2024: CMS Building Committee reports a new scope-adjusted estimate of $120 million. 

To add fuel to the fire, the Building Committee Chair is also pushing the committee to consider geothermal, adding another $10 million to the budget and delaying the project by several months. 

Committee Members "Shocked"

Committee members reported to the press that they were surprised to see the new estimate from Turner. Committee member Joe Rosetti reported to the Greenwich Time: "I'm really shocked, honestly, that we find out today, or yesterday, that we're $8 million beyond what we were a week ago or two weeks ago, because everything was fine a couple weeks ago,"... "I just don't see how it happened." 

Shocked appears disingenuous at best. With a new square footage of 132,000 square feet (and growing), is anyone surprised that the construction budget increased $8,000,000 for a school that increased its footprint by 7,000 square feet? The school is likely to exceed $1,000/sq. ft. by the time this committee has done it's 'diligence'. 

Conflict, Anyone? Ex-DTC Chair & Ex-Turner Construction Employee are Building Committee Members

The CMS Building Committee is headed by the ex-Chair of the Democratic Town Committee, Tony Turner, infamous for receiving the largest fine in the state for campaign violations. The SEEC fined Turner $52,000 and slapped current Democrat BET members Leslie Moriarty and David Weisbrod with a fine as well in 2019. Outside of Turner, the Building Committee includes Democrat Joe Rosetti (a 30-year veteran of Turner Construction). It will be interesting to see if Turner and Rosetti support the budget increases. 

 

The Board of Education is moving forward after the nomination of Karen Kowalski as Board Chair.

A few issues to pay attention to. First, the BOE recently approved a budget that came in over  BET guidelines by approximately $3 million by a 7-2 vote (Walsh and Kowalski voting against).  The budget is in the hands of the BET now as to whether they approve the budget as is, or return to the BOE as guidelines. 

Second, racial imbalance is an issue GPS will be facing this year.  With two schools out of balance (Hamilton Ave and New Lebanon), the State is pushing the town to redistrict. This will be something to watch this year as the BOE tackles this issue. 

Third, special education spending is increasing exponentially. Is it increasing for better or worse?!?! The amount spent on special education does not align with the enhancements made to special education, which were designed to decrease the amount of out of district placements. The BOE needs to dig into this to really understand where the money is being spent. 

Fourth, the CMS rebuild is facing challenges with increases to cost months before we even have a shovel in the ground.  While this school must be rebuilt, the costs are rapidly escalating which is concerning and something the BOE needs to get under control quickly.  A school that was oversized to begin with only seems to be getting bigger and more expensive in a district with declining enrollment.



"Spending a significant amount of money on GPS doesn’t bother me — if it actually is going towards excellence in education for our kids while keeping them in safe, updated, & appropriate facilities.  

However, when over $800Mil has gone towards fixing mismanaged blunders, “vanity spending” (such as failed GeoThermal & Solar powered systems,) and overbuilding — all of which are consequences from lack of proper facilities planning & appropriate management, then I see that as a massive problem and misappropriation of taxpayers’ money."

Tommasino: Accountability for Ham Ave HVAC System (GFP Letter)

 

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Greenwich Republicans
PO Box 4030 | Greenwich, CT 06831
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