Alfred Storms Board of Finance Coffee and Comment ~ By Sandi Forman
Democratic candidates for the Bethel Board of Finance met with residents on Thursday to discuss comments and questions related to Financing a Better Bethel. Candidate Claudia Stephan explained why she is running: “It’s important to meet the needs of all of the town’s residents, not just the vocal ones. I think I can make a contribution by working together with the other members of the Board of Finance to continue the momentum of the good work the Town is doing now.”
Because First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker and Selectman Rich Straiton were on hand to answer any questions, the discussion turned quickly to the recent storm, power outages, and clean up. Mr. Knickerbocker talked about the progress of restoring electricity to the Town and what we can expect for the rest of those areas that were still dark at the time. This storm was far more devastating than Irene or other storms in recent history. The State of Connecticut has been declared a disaster area on both the state and federal levels and we can therefore expect to receive financial assistance for the tremendous effort by Town employees to clean up after the storm. The Town Liaison program worked well in Bethel and helped put us ahead of other towns in the restoration effort.
Other topics discussed included further pension funding requirements and grants received and applied for, which are allowing us to take on projects we otherwise could not do at this time including the sidewalk on Plumtrees Road and Library construction.
This was the last session in this Coffee and Comment series. All of the candidates appreciated the thoughtful questions and commentary on the part of the participants. The Coffee and Comment program gave residents an opportunity to learn more to make a better informed decision about their votes. Election Day is this Tuesday, November 8th.