January 28, 2021

Letter to the Editor: Re-elect Formica, He Has Strong Skills That We Need

To the Editor:

Paul Formica has a long history of outstanding public service, and I urge all voters to re-elect him as our state senator. Paul was the leader of East Lyme, one of our most successful large towns, guiding its prudent growth, championing conservation and governing in a strong, fair and effective manner as evidence by the vibrance of his town. He has done the same for us in Hartford.

Mr. Formica’s opponent has many unfounded and distorted criticisms for him, including that Republicans are holding up a “completed” bill for a public health insurance option because Republicans are being paid by insurance company lobbyists. This bribery charge is inflammatory and just not true, but unfortunately not unusual for attacks on Republicans. Further, as should be obvious, if Democrats have a “completed” bill they would like to pass, they control
every branch of government and can pass whatever they choose without need of a single Republican vote.

We need as our state senator a person who not only cares for constituents, but has the proven experience putting well-conceived policies in place to make constituents’ lives better. In the 45 years of Democratic rule in New London, of which Ms. Marx highlights her participation, it would be very hard to find too many people who say their lives have improved. Vote Paul Formica to make Connecticut affordable again and fix the absolute mess in Hartford created by truly awful, one-party rule.

Sincerely,

David Kelsey,
Old Lyme.

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Letter to the Editor: Unite Against Vandalism, Reward Offered for Information Leading to Arrest(s)

An Open Letter to my Fellow Residents:

With great dismay, I note road after road of beaten, vandalized mailboxes in the past month.  Sill Lane, Boston Post Road, Four Mile River Road – each and every box has been hit, my own included.  This is a broken windows issue, and I offer a $1,000 personal reward to anyone our police tell me has given them information that leads to an arrest.

Vandals and petty criminals need to be on the alert – Old Lyme does not put up with such behavior, and we are united as a town against them.   Perhaps it is time for some Neighborhood Watch signs, unfortunately.  Please alert our police to anyone you may hear bragging about this thoughtless, pointless and despicable act.

Sincerely,

David Kelsey,
Old Lyme.

Editor’s Note: The photos, submitted by the author, show a selection of mailboxes in Sill Lane, which have been vandalized.

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Letter to the Editor: Fair Process Needed for Fair Housing

To the Editor:

I believe in open, careful and deliberative government for our democracy.  As a member of the Board of Finance, I try to raise material issues to achieve the best process for open discussions and careful decision making, not rushed, rubber-stamping votes.

My observation of the effort to allow multifamily zoning for the site at Exit 70 and Route 156 has raised my alarm very significantly.  On the face of it, the location puts potential residents at obvious and significant risk of getting t-boned by folks exiting I-95, which calls into question the initial decision to choose that site in the first place and spend so much time and effort, especially with other much better sites in town.

This is the largest multifamily project ever in Old Lyme, and its application has seemed rushed, though with a welcome slow down Monday evening by the Zoning Commission.  The application has been consistently incomplete before the Zoning Commission and Inland Wetlands Commission (IWC), and material facts seem to change at each presentation.  Inlands Wetlands actually approved the application May 22nd without having our Town engineer or other Town expert offer their opinion on the facts presented.  Such approval is wrong and inconsiderate of the Town residents whose interests the Commission is supposed to represent.  Proper process is for our Town engineer and other consultants to be engaged in the process and offer their expert opinions upon which our commissions should act in the safety and environmental interests of the Town.

As I began to learn more about the advanced nature of the project earlier this year (despite HOPE portrayals of an early conceptual stage at a late January informational meeting), Chuck Hinckley and I decided that it was important to engage our own affordable housing attorney and environmental consultants to offer their opinions on the circumstances of the process and on the site itself.  We were right to do so, given the result of the IWC decision derived from revised applicant plans presented the meeting night of the decision and made without the input of the Town attorney.

I support efforts to bring smart affordable housing to those who need it.  I don’t support those who seek to achieve that goal through rushed incomplete or preliminary information that has not been vetted by our own Town experts.  This is an important Town decision that we need to get right.

Sincerely,

David Kelsey,
Old Lyme.

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