Second Opinion

August 24, 2006

Pension Bonding Needs Open Minds

By Ron Gambardella

The Democrats on the Council are working hard to defeat the mayor’s proposed $85M bonding of the pension plan. It seems the issue is not what may be best for the town, but war of the wills. The mayor did not discuss this proposal with the Council Democrats before going public.

This created backlash in the form of deflated egos and hurt feelings. As you read this, Democrats are working tirelessly to defeat the measure before it has a fair chance to be heard. This is unfortunate for the taxpayer. Then again, this Council has done nothing to provide taxpayer relief. Let me try to explain why bonding is the only feasible solution to resolve this issue.

The Democrats oppose bonding for three reasons. They believe 1) bonding will mortgage the town’s future; 2) it limits the town’s ability to bargain with the unions; and 3) it reduces the town’s overall borrowing capacity by increasing the debt load. Let me address each issue separately.

Mortgages the Future

The proposed bonding will go a long way in satisfying the town’s fiduciary obligation to fund the pension at levels that bring the town closer to the actuary’s projections. Why this is important is that the actuary is attempting to project the overall pension payments for current and future retirees. By looking ahead, the actuary can determine what the current funding requirement must be so that enough money is available when needed. It is naïve and absurd to think you can pay as you go. The payments will eventually increase to a level that the town will not be able to afford to pay. This strategy will almost certainly exhaust the pension fund and create a major financial crisis for the town. DO NOT BE FOOLED by the siren’s call of do nothing and the problem will go away. This is the proposed solution of the Democrats who control the Council.

By adding cash to the pension and ensuring the plan is properly managed, the money will grow in much the same way as saving for an IRA while you are young. If we fail to take action now, we will have most assuredly set the course for disaster. No matter how you look at it, there is simply not enough money in the pension fund to meet our future obligations. I cannot say it any clearer. If you are a town employee reading this, you would be nuts for not calling your so-called representatives and pressing them to vote in favor of this measure (good luck with that one).

By funding the pension plan to an adequate level we can create stability and prevent ever-increasing contributions that are projected to grow to $20 to $25 million per year. Where will the money come from? It will come from you and me in the form of a steadily rising mil rate. Allowing the funds to grow over time will ultimately help minimize our future contributions. By bonding the pension now we can smooth the payments, much like a mortgage, and make budgeting much more predictable and manageable by lessening the impact to the taxpayer. My prediction is that the Democrats sitting on this Council will not lift a finger to reduce the burden on the taxpayer.

Limits Town’s Ability to Negotiate

This concern is laughable. The theory goes that by demonstrating to the unions the difficulties the town is experiencing with its pension plan, they can better persuade unions to accept concessions. This, of course, is utter nonsense and should be dismissed as a scare tactic. Unions support Democrats. And Democrats support unions by negotiating extremely favorable contracts that have created the mess we are in. To think that the Democrats will hurt the very folks who continue to vote them in office is preposterous and is not worthy of serious consideration.

Reduces Town’s Borrowing

Yes, the town’s borrowing capacity will be diminished, but not to the point that it would hamper plans for capital spending for the foreseeable future. We are simply borrowing at levels allowed by our charter. The fact that the borrowing is increasing may cause some concern, but this proposed borrowing is prudent, sound and for once taxpayer-friendly financial planning that will head off a certain disaster if we don’t act now. The initial reaction to defeat this proposal before it has had a chance to be debated is typical of the folks who have been controlling this town for years. It is simply bad politics, bad judgment and a bad idea.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

August 21, 2006

Sh! Don’t Mention the Pension

By Ron Gambardella

Mayor Henrici recently announced that he would like to bond Hamden’s under-funded pension with an $85M cash infusion. As an aside, $85M is not nearly enough to meet the actuarial projections of required funding. After reading the responses by longtime Council members, you would think this was the first time they were made aware of the problem.

Man, I am telling you it is hard to read some of this bull.

Council President Al Gorman appointed me to a three-member pension subcommittee during my first term. The other two members were former Council members Eliot Sheiman and Ann Altman. My specific recommendation at that time was that the pension was woefully under funded and needed immediate attention. I recommended bonding, knowing it was impossible to make up the shortfall with meager annual contributions. The response I received was one of ridicule and scoffing, especially from Ann Altman. President Gorman added that the actuaries have been telling us that for years.

The mentality of the Council is that the problem will go away if we keep it quiet and don’t pay too much attention to it.
Among other credentials, I hold an MBA in finance. Also, in my current capacity as a registered investment advisor, I provide investment and retirement advice to folks. My purpose in communicating this information is to demonstrate that I have a fundamental understanding of the principles of money management. Despite my best efforts to educate and convince the Council the pension plan was in trouble, the Council as a body took the advice of one of their own -- Ann Altman -- who worked tirelessly to defeat any move toward making the pension plan sound.

Ann, as far as I know, has no formal training in finance, but she qualifies as a Democrat. Apparently that is the only qualification that matters, since the Council in its lack of wisdom took her advice. What we have is the blind leading the blind while the entire town is falling into a gaping hole.

Need more evidence? Mayor Barbara DeNicola did not sign two budgets that the Democrats presented to her because they decided against adequately funding the pension during her administration. Republican mayoral candidate Dick Reilly made this a campaign issue. Folks, enough is enough. I can hardly stand listening to inane discussion from uninitiated Council members defending a position that they know little or nothing about. Then when a vote is taken, the results show overwhelmingly that no amount of evidence can penetrate party politics and allegiances to friends and family. The Council voted to stick with status quo as they have done consistently during my tenure.

OK, now that you have gotten some sense on how the town is being run, take a gander at why the pension is so under funded. I have taken the time to request the top 20 pension payments made to town retirees. If you are not sick yet, quick, grab hold of a barf bag and review the list below:


$ Monthly







































































It seems that the total monthly payment to the top 20 pension holders is $131,437 -- or about $1.6M annually. Not for nothing, but who worked that hard to deserve a pension of $102,000 a year (top holder) for life? The lowest paid pensioner on the top 20 gets $67K. We are not talking about highly skilled employees who took years to prepare for their primary profession or occupation; we are talking about municipal employees for the town of Hamden here -- police, fire, etc.!

How many of you have worked in difficult environments in trying circumstances for 20 or 30 years and don’t receive pensions that come close to what these folks are getting and never will?

I don’t know about you, but my back is breaking from having to pay taxes to cover these fat contracts that the Democrats endorse in turn for votes. The tax burden is unbearable. The amount of money coming out of the town’s pension plan is greater than the money going in. This is not rocket science. That is why the mayor has to bond the shortfall and we must pay the tab.

We simply cannot keep up with the bloated pension payment the Democrats so eagerly handed out over the years. We need to do something about this situation and it begins with removing those elected officials who created this mess, namely the Democrats!

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

August 10, 2006

Recreation Supervisors Part II

By Ron Gambardella

I have received more feedback on my column on recreation supervisors’ mandatory overtime pay than any other I have published to date (three people responded).

It appears from the responses that indeed the recreations supervisors are well liked and considered a valuable contribution to the town. The primary argument in favor of paying the overtime was that the supervisors seemed to work a disproportionate amount of time after the normal workday concludes, typically at 4:30 p.m.

The gist of the responses was that the supervisors meet or exceed the expectations of Hamden residents and deserve the compensation recently approved by the Council.

From these comments, I can conclude that people value and want the services provided by the supervisors. They have a good faith contract that provides compensation for the efforts exerted on the job. So what should we do as a town?

Do we leave the status quo and continue to compensate the supervisors in a manner that cannot be easily verified? How can we be sure that neither the town nor the supervisors are unfairly treated? Or do we dare think of alternatives that can achieve rational results?

I don’t think (this might be a stretch) anyone believes the wording in the current contract makes sense -- essentially leaving the door open for payment irrespective of hours that may or may not have been actually worked. Perhaps with three supervisors and a new contract we can structure the workday in such a way as to allow staggering the start time on a rotating basis. For example, if there is a requirement for supervisors to be available after 4:30, perhaps one or two supervisors could begin their workday at noon. This would ensure coverage at the appropriate times and save the town on overtime pay. Other issues would have to be addressed such as employee-to-supervisor ratios, but these are not difficult problems. If we work together, we can achieve reasonable results.

The point of all this is that we must think of ways to provide the services Hamden residents want at a cost that will not continue to drive up our tax bills. The above suggestion is a simple solution to a taxing problem. Let’s bring some sanity to the process, otherwise we may find we will have to eliminate services because we can no longer afford to pay.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

August 8, 2006

Unfinished Business

By Ron Gambardella

I have been reviewing my notes relative to unfinished Council business and thought that I would provide a status on several items of interest. As I write this, my plan is to introduce these items at Monday night’s Council meeting in a public forum. The purpose is to prevent a lapse of memory, which this Council and administration are quite prone to.

  1. Employee mileage reimbursement program. This program was introduced by the current administration to justify the purchase of a brand new SUV for the mayor. To date, not a single employee has been enrolled in the plan nor have any cars been reassigned or retired from the fleet. So far, all we have is the addition of a new SUV for the mayor and higher cost to the taxpayers.
  1. New Ambulance Service. This idea was introduced by the mayor. The original intent was to introduce the service as a means of producing more revenue for the town. My view is that this is a breakeven proposal at best or more likely an ill-conceived concept that will end up, you guessed it, costing the taxpayers more money than it is worth. However, given the pace of development, I don’t expect to ever see this service in Hamden
  1. Town-wide Wi-Fi network. With all the problems the town is facing does anyone think this is a good idea? This item was a key campaign promise of the current administration. I have to question what folks were thinking if this was one of the primary reasons to elect a mayor. Connecticut Town and City magazine, sponsored by the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities, said this about town-wide Wi-Fi: “St. Cloud is going through reported implementation problems (e.g., connections can be spotty for some residents and the town has had to offer signal boosting devices for $179 per resident). Connection speeds in locations with a weak signal can be slow. Startup and maintenance cost for ambitious citywide coverage programs will be high. Effective public awareness programs will be essential to communicating the value of implementing such programs.” This seems to be a colossal waste of time and taxpayer money. Given the administration’s track record for implementation, I don’t think we will need to worry about this one.
  1. Charter revision proposal. I introduced this concept at the July Council meeting. Council members initially objected to initiating the process claiming they need time to review the documentation that I had in my possession. I instructed the clerk of the Council to provide a copy to each member. President Gorman indicated that he would reintroduce the measure. I hope to kick off the process in September.
  2. Phase-in of property tax. Mark Sanders did an admirable job of laying out the specifics of how taxpayers could benefit from a phase-in. Finance Chair Curt Leng gave the administration an opportunity to respond. We now wait for Mr. Leng (as promised) to hold another session to decide the matter. So far, nothing has been scheduled.
  1. Dadio farm purchase. Rumor has it that this deal has come apart. Recall that this item was originally brought before the Council as an eminent domain issue. The administration sought approval and won Council support for eminent domain. Subsequently, it was thought that a deal could be brokered outside of taking the property through eminent domain. This deal was brought before the Council to purchase the property for $4.6M. Apparently the deal fell through. The Council has not been given an update by the administration at this time. More later.

My intention is to keep the administration and Council focused on commitments they made to the taxpaying public. It is not enough to say you are going to do something. It is more important that it actually gets done! Once again the old adage rings true: “Actions speak louder than words.”

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

August 7, 2006

This One You’re Not Going to Believe

By Ron Gambardella

During the Aug. 1 Legislative Council meeting, an interesting item was discussed among Parks & Recreation Committee members. The item was a request to transfer $28,071 from the Council’s overtime account to the Parks & Recreations’.

Typically, requests for overtime funding are routine and not a major cause for concern. However, this request for overtime was presented as part of a negotiated union arrangement with Parks & Recreation supervisors. It seems that the town of Hamden is obligated to pay three supervisors a guaranteed five hours of overtime per week -- whether or not they actually worked the time. I have taken the liberty to cite section 4.3 of the union contract for your review:

Recreation Supervisors - The parties recognize that the position of Recreation Supervisor necessitates irregular hours of work, including work weeks which frequently exceed forty (40) hours per week, depending on the season, weather, number of participants, program and availability of personnel, and therefore the parties agree that the normal work week for such positions shall consist of forty (40) hours per week, plus guaranteed minimum of five (5) hours overtime per week, each work week to consist of the seven (7) days Monday through Sunday.

When the director of Parks & Recreation was pressed on the amount of overtime that was actually worked by the supervisors, he was able to come up with one example referring to a Saturday festival at Brooksvale Park claiming this was the type of activity that would require supervisors to work overtime. Presumably, it took three supervisors to work the overtime that day. Council members also questioned if the supervisors could be mandated to work the overtime each week rather than just being paid for no work. The director indicated he would investigate this option.

If you are like me, you can’t help but wonder if the historically high tax increase we all just received could have been prevented with just a little commonsense negotiation. Let’s face it, if I was an employee of the town I would wholeheartedly endorse and support those elected officials who have time and again voted in favor of the lucrative contracts we see exemplified in this article.

In this case it is the Democrats. Why would you consider any other party that could possibly jeopardize the status quo? In fact, the situation is so out of hand we have management employees in their own unions. This is unheard of in most businesses. It appears it is standard practice with municipalities. This is what can happen when folks in town choose to ignore what is going on at Town Hall. Simply stated, elected officials are trading their votes for a guarantee that they will remain in office rather than doing what is best for the town. As usual, you and I are left holding the bag.

Don’t be discouraged. It is easy to be disgusted and disillusioned by the Democrats and their overall philosophy of tax and spend. Any rational mind would never have approved a condition as stated in section 4.3. If we are to get serious about change, then it will require unseating those elected officials who support the status quo. In my opinion, it is the majority of the sitting Democrats.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

July 22, 2006

Badamo's Council Supporters Showed No Spine

By Ron Gambardella

The mayor's recent announcement for fire chief has brought to a conclusion the endless debates and war of the wills between the mayor's office and the Legislative Council. It was clear that the majority of Council members would not support the mayor's first choice for fire chief. I believe we can draw several conclusions from recent events. They are as follows:

1. This in no way reflects poorly on Mr. Badamo. On the contrary, I support his initiative. An opportunity of a lifetime was presented to him. Who among us would not have ceased the moment and done the very same thing had we been given the opportunity? I know it was extremely disappointing to withdraw from consideration, but under the circumstances it was the right thing to do. I would be happy to consider Mr. Badamo for fire chief at some point in the future.

2. I find it very interesting the deafening silence of those Council members who initially supported Mr. Badamo. With friends like these who needs enemies. This calls into question the judgment of those Council members who initially supported the mayor's nominee then did absolutely nothing to move that nomination forward. In fact, once it was determined that the mayor's candidate was going to be met with stiff opposition, they sought the safety and security of anonymity. People change their mind all the time when more facts are revealed. But in this case, the people who blindly supported the mayor's nomination could not or would not admit a lapse in judgment, nor would they come out and defend the mayor's choice. As a former sailor in the U.S. Navy, an early indication of a distressed ship was the appearance of the rats attempting to escape the impending disaster. Enough said regarding this issue.

3. Another observation I find interesting in this matter is the mayor's insistence on reaching out to other fire departments for a qualified candidate. I don't believe he gave serious consideration to any internal candidates. It appears the mayor wanted to punish the department for lobbying against his candidate. Moreover, the mayor is not overly concerned of the impact that this strategy will have on the department. I am savvy enough to know that the rank and file has many ways of either embracing departmental goals and objectives or sabotaging them. My experience is that promoting qualified candidates from within the department is good for morale and provides a sense of fairness in the overall process. I cannot see any good that can come from antagonizing the rank and file. The new chief will not only have to contend with the demands of the job, but will also have to deal with the morale of the department. These problems could surface in the form of excessive absences, employee turnover and uncooperative behavior. Who can blame them? I am sure many of us can identify with unjust personnel moves.

As you can see, there is always a story behind the story. I have attempted to bring your attention to the subtleties that go on behind the scenes.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

July 11, 2006

The Dems Are Bringing Us Down, Folks

By Ron Gambardella

For wealthy Hamden homeowners, paying their new tax bill it's just a bump in the road. For those who do not have the ways and means at their disposal, the tax increase presents a major hurdle. Tough decisions will undoubtedly be made over which bills to pay.

Unlike the Democrats who run the town by simply passing off problems to the rest of us in the way of tax increases, people who are struggling to make ends meet will have to adhere to strict budgets. They must cut all spending that isn't directly related to day-to-day survival.

Struggling with difficult financial decisions is a concept unfamiliar to the current administration and Council. The current thinking is, "If the town requires more funds, then raise taxes." A simple solution for a party that offers no alternatives, no proposals and no hope. Hamden voters elected the highest possible number of Democrats allowed under the current charter. The voters believed the Democrats and their false promises of making Hamden a better community. However, the Democrats failed to enumerate the heavy toll that would be levied on the homeowner. They thought it best to reveal this fact after the election.

In the Council's last discussion of a phase-in, a key question arose as to who would benefit from Mark Sanders' proposed phase-in. If you recall, Mr. Sanders suggested that if a homeowner's property value increased by 60 percent or greater, that homeowner would stand to benefit from a phase-in. Subsequent to the Council's last discussion, Tax Assessor Mr. Jim Clynes provided the figures for those people who would stand to benefit. It turns out that 15,630 residential accounts -- or about 87 percent of the town's 18,000 residential accounts -- would benefit from Mr. Sanders' proposal. These figures overwhelming support moving forward with a phase-in. The ridiculous notion that the computer systems are incapable of handling it only insults those of us who know differently. To the uninitiated, it seems like a plausible excuse to do nothing.

Mark Sanders has not only offered a solution to the current tax crisis, but he has done all the legwork to support his viewpoint. He has more knowledge, integrity and overall ability than the majority of elected officials. His arguments, analyses and conclusions shine so brightly that any attempt by the administration to counter his proposal magnifies just how inept the administration appears.

Most of the Council members are stupefied by the phase-in discussion and cannot be relied upon to render a credible decision on the matter. They have resorted to blissfully following the lead of the administration as it sings, "There is Nothing We Can Do."

This typifies the general reaction to new ideas, concepts and solutions to difficult and trying problems the town faces. It is clear this administration and Council simply are not up to the task. There is no desire, willingness or ability to move this town progressively forward. The refusal to do a phase-in is just another example of lackluster, mediocre performance the voters in this town have come to expect from their leadership. They have been so dulled by the tired mantra, "There is Nothing We Can Do," they actually believe it.

Council members appear foolish and self-serving when they choose to defend their party at any cost, rather than doing what is right for the town. Some folks would have you believe that party politics has no place in the Council Chambers. I will go so far as to say, the Council Chambers is simply an extension of the Democratic caucus and the many favors owed to friends, families, business associates and party affiliates. I am sad to report more of the same is on the way.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

July 7, 2006

Leng's Phase-in Facts

By Curt Leng

Someone once said, "Why let little ol' facts get in the way of good political talking points?" This is what you experienced in a recent "Second Opinion" column by Ron Gambardella, regarding the reval phase-in.

As many of you know, I have been a strong supporter of several progressive strategies aimed at lowering the tax burden on Hamden homeowners during this very difficult year. I worked hard with my fellow Council members to lower the budget presented to us by the town by some $6 million.

During that process I was a vocal advocate of a two-tiered tax approach, one that would have lowered residential mil rates by a mil and a half by keeping the motor vehicle tax at last year's rate. This strategy would have helped so many Hamden homeowners and would have been good policy, assisting those who need the help most, especially seniors.

Unfortunately, this plan was not put to a vote because the administration told the Council that the town's financial computer system could not handle a two-tiered tax rate. I argued that the town speed up its planned financial system upgrade in order to implement this plan. But we were told it would not be done.

The plan was not allowed, and because of this, along with a number of other reasons relating to taxes being too high for our residents to handle, I voted against the budget and the too-high tax rate.

Last week, the town administration gave a presentation on the much-discussed revaluation phase-in proposal. The concept, along with a few other progressive tax proposals, was discussed informally during the budget process and more recently by Mark Sanders, who gave an impressive presentation to the Legislative Council on the concept.

The administration's presentation demonstrated, unfortunately, that the type of phase-in the town can offer with its current financial system would need to be accomplished under a very specific statute, which leads to a more complex formula for reval and less help to Hamden homeowners. The presentation showed, with hard numbers on homes ranging from $150,000 to $600,000 in value, the exact savings a person could expect, including the important vehicle tax cost, which does not "phase in" per state law. The administration gave these numbers for both a three-year and four-year phase-in.

To my great disappointment, the phase-in did little to help our struggling taxpayers. The savings for any homeowner with a residential property under approximately $350,000 was about $100 after taking into account the change (increase) in motor vehicle tax that would also come from a phase-in. As residents have seen recently from their new tax bills, while their property tax has increased, motor vehicles have decreased, in some instances softening the blow.

With this not being an option that will do real justice in helping Hamden taxpayers, I asked the administration to calculate what a two-year phase-in would mean, what savings would result, etc., using the same legal formula. I still wanted to believe we could help Hamden residents.

To my repeat disappointment, the savings were about the same. Again, the average savings for any home under $350,000 was about $100. For all the promise of tax savings from a reval, it would be a slap in the face to the taxpayers to give a savings of $80 and less to $300,000 and below.

The bottom line is that these reval phase-in proposals currently being discussed will not provide the real savings that we should be providing to help our tax-burdened residents. If they were, I would initiate and vote for one in a heartbeat.

I'm not ready to give up on helping our residents following this flawed revaluation. I want to continue to look at creative ways of reducing Hamden's tax burden to help people as soon as possible.

But right now, the phase-in does not seem to be an option that will help our residents when we look at the facts.

On a side note, I would like to extend my personal congratulations to our new Police Chief Tom Wydra. I very much look forward to working with Chief Wydra now and in the years to come. This was a great selection made by the administration and I believe we'll be seeing accomplishments from the Police Department in the coming years that will reflect this selection.

I would be remiss if I didn't take a moment to publicly thank our retiring Chief Jack Kennelly, whom I had the pleasure of working with both on the Council and as chief. He proved to be a great councilman, an excellent chief and a trusted friend. I hope that Chief Kennelly will continue to stay involved in Hamden -- especially with our guardian services.

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. You can contact Leng at

July 3, 2006

Politically Incorrect in Hamden

By Ron Gambardella

I like music. You name it -- I like it all. The thing about music is that if you listen to the same song long enough, you can grow tired of it. You know the lyrics by heart. Eventually comes that fateful day where you can no longer tolerate listening to that same song or you will go crazy.

This is exactly where I am with the current Council and administration. I can't stand to listen to the same tired "There Is Nothing We Can Do" song. How much longer can we ask the residents of Hamden to be patient? Trust your elected officials. They know what's best. If you believe this, then you also believe the Democrats are sincerely and diligently working on your behalf to make Hamden a better place to live -- no matter how much it costs.

The camel's knees are buckling and the current Council and administration choose to add another straw.

We have just accepted the largest tax increase in the town's history. Now all we ask is that we phase in the increase to allow a gradual adjustment so we can figure out how to pay the piper. What could be simpler? The town will realize the same tax revenue and residents get a slight break. I support Mark Sanders' phase-in methodology for the following reasons:

1. A phase-in will, in many cases, defer the shift of commercial property taxes to homeowners, providing some relief.
2. Councilman Jim Pascarella presented an analysis that clearly shows that folks who need relief will benefit from a phase-in.
3. The second tax payment (due Jan. 1, 2007) can be adjusted to reflect a phase-in. Therefore, to say it is too late is nonsense. Where there is a will there is a way.
4. The average residential tax savings over a three-year period would be approximately $615.
5. Deferring a phase-in until the second payment will allow enough time for the administration to respond to the change.
6. The residents of Hamden clearly want a phase-in. They are shouting from the rooftops. No one is listening. This is taxation without representation in its purest form.

With such an obvious benefit, ask yourself why the Council and the administration won't act on it. The answer can only be political strategizing. Who will remember a year from now? People will move on with the stresses of life and accept the outcome of that old familiar tune "There Is Nothing We Can Do."

Don't be fooled by this. The Democrats have lost touch with the people they were elected to represent. They have the arrogance to believe that they can do just about anything and be re-elected. They say things to tickle the ear, but do little to lift the burden from the people. The time for platitudes and niceties is over. Will anyone stand with me in opposing this self-serving administration and Council? What say you?

Councilmen Curt Leng (D) and Ron Gambardella (R) give us their take on what's happening in town goverment. Gambardella can be reached at

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