Highlights Republicans party’s ‘illegal’ behavior

To the Editor:

The voters of the town of Fairfield will be voting in their traditional 10 districts this November, despite the attempt by the Republican majority party to create eight new districts illegally. Shame on the Republicans.

Thankfully, an engaged citizen, Jack Slane, brought forth a lawsuit to seek an injunction against the RTM vote that created eight districts in an illegal fashion. All Republicans voted for the plan, all Democrats voted against the plan. The town attorney, Stanton Lesser, warned moderator Jeffrey Steele and the RTM body that their vote was illegal. That did not deter the Republican leadership, nor their flock of sheep.

The plan as passed along party lines was actually voted a “town ordinance” which the charter describes. An ordinance is simply a local law.

Slane won the lawsuit, as decided by Judge Mary Sommers of Bridgeport Superior Court, in a lengthy, well thought out 41-page decision. The numerous illegalities conducted by the Republicans were enumerated. Some of them include the redistricting committee of the RTM did not recommend the plan as required by charter; the plan itself contained numerous errors between proposed map and descriptive district lines, and even excluded some residents from any district (as determined by the ever vigilant Matt Wagner, Democrat Registrar of Voters; the Republican town clerk did not publish the ordinance after the vote, which is required, although she took the illegal map/ordinance and sent it to the Secretary of the State for recordation — following the town attorney’s advice in the first instance, and rejecting the town attorney’s advice pertinent to the second instance; the Republican majority ignored the required RTM rules of committee review of the item.

As if that was not enough illegality, the Republicans, in an outrageous fashion, decided to “fix the map” to try and cure the deficiencies after the vote. The leadership and the Republican Registrar of Voters Roger Autuori went to the town engineering department to redraw lines to comply with the deficiencies discovered earlier by Wagner. The RTM did not endorse these changes. Has anyone ever heard of changing an ordinance, a law, behind closed doors without legislative determination? A bad attempt at cover-up, at best.

The action of the Republican RTM is not clean government. I sincerely hope that the voters will stream to the polls this November, remember that this Republican leadership created a stain on our town, and simply throw them out. They deserve it. I myself sat on a Democratic-led RTM for many years.  We always were concerned about the rules, fairness and the legality of our actions. It’s time to return this all-important body to a Democrat majority.   Come out to vote.

 

Ellery Plotkin

Chair

Fairfield Democratic Town Committee

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