All posts by Dave Bechtel

Hamden Candidate Forum

The League of Women Voters (LWV) to sponsor Hamden Legislative Council Forum and Mayoral Debate

 

ALL Hamden District and At-Large Legislative Council candidates and Mayoral candidates have been invited to participate in the LWV Legislative Council Candidates Forum and Mayoral Debate on Oct. 26th at 7:00PM in the Thornton Wilder Auditorium,  2901 Dixwell Avenue.

Ray Andrewsen, General Manager and Morning Show Host of Quinnipiac University’s community radio station, will moderate the event.

The 1st part of the evening will be devoted to the Legislative Council District and At-large candidates.  Each candidate will be introduced and have 2 minutes to name the district they plan to represent and state the reason they are running.  

The second part of the evening will be devoted to a Mayoral debate between Democratic candidate Curt Balzano Leng and Republican candidate Salman Hamid.

PLEASE ATTEND!   Residents will be encouraged to submit their questions on local town issues at the debate The questions will be asked of the candidates by the moderator.  

Learn about your candidates!  Ask questions! Get Answers!

Canal Crossing Letter

Dan Kops, Hamden Department of Planning and Zoning

 

Dear Mr. Kops,

Mixed-income communities build stronger communities and living in these communities has contributed to educational and economic successes and expanded opportunities for all. Acknowledging this, the State of Connecticut passed legislation that dictates that 10 percent of housing in the state meets the affordable standards as established by the state.

The developers of Canal Crossing are building luxury apartments on Mather Street.  In order to get approval for this project, they took advantage of the affordable housing law outlined in 8-30g, which allows a developer to build multi-family housing in a location not zoned for multi-family housing.  In order to get approval under 8-30g a developer must provide affordable housing in 20 percent of their units at that location.

Now, with the project starting to lease apartments, they are asking the Planning and Zoning Commission to allow them to eliminate any and all affordable housing they were supposed to provide on Mather Street and put that number of units at their Mix Avenue property instead.

We see value in the affordable units at the Canal Crossing location and cannot support the reassignment to another location that perpetuates economic segregation.

Sincerely,

Whitneyville Civic Association Board

Dave Bechtel, President

Connie Matheson, Vice President

Deb Maldonado, Treasurer

Deirdre Dolan, Secretary

MAY 2017 MEETING MINUTES

Whitneyville Civic Association

At 7:05 the meeting was called to order by President Janet Kazienko.

Tonight is Janet’s last meeting after her two years in office. Janet thanked the board and said she learned a lot on the job, but she’s happy to be passing the baton. She said her husband, especially, is relieved her tenure is over.

  • Conflict with Ridge Hill PTA meeting. Our meeting will potentially move from the 2nd to 3rd Thursday of the month.
  • Library Fundraiser. Dave Bechtel said the Library fundraiser brought in $2000, and was a lot of fun and great for the community. Maureen Armstrong will work on a check ceremony with the town library board. New trees were recently planted as part of the refurbishment.
  • Treasurers report: $1,664.81 and $3,848.82 in our accounts, including the library fund raiser monies.
  • Dave Bechtel was unanimously elected President. Connie Matheson was unanimously elected Vice-President.

Guest Speaker. State Representative Michael D’Agostino spoke.

  • D’Agostino is still trying to change the mechanism for distribution of state funds to schools. The state was ready to announce the new budget, when it learned that quarterly-filer taxes were seriously below projections. Now looking at a 2.5 billion dollar deficit.
  • Over the years, the state did not regularly put money aside to fund the pension obligation. Little is left for discretionary spending. The political reality is that taxes are unlikely to be raised.
  • However, there could be a sales tax increase and regional tax assessments, as are done in other states and are being discussed. No matter what else happens, educational taxes pay for more than just math and English teaching, so Rep. D’Agostino is hoping funds can be diverted from other pots to communities that need it.
  • Budget cuts will hurt state workers who may be laid off, resulting in depleted services and municipal aid.
  • We might not have a budget on June 7, which would give the governor plenary power, and might not be a bad thing since he is not running again.

Citizen Input and Questions.

  • Deirdre Dolan asked if legalized marijuana or toll roads are being considered as potential revenue sources. “Legalized marijuana is interesting,” Rep. D’Agostino said. “I think it will come back into the budget because the money will just end up in Massachusetts or Vermont.” Toll roads could also happen but the money can only be used for transportation which would make the transportation fund solvent, perhaps $100 million in the first few years. Reps from border towns like Danbury don’t like them.
  • Closing the hedge fund loophole will not happen. No appetite in the Senate and the Governor will veto that.
  • Connie Matheson asked, “Should we be making phone calls to support your formula for fairly supporting all the schools?” D’Agostino suggested calling Martin Looney to make sure Hamden gets its educational funding. Courts found that the way Connecticut distributes its educational funds is unconstitutional. This case is now at the state Supreme Court, and the new methodology Rep. D’Agostino is working on would change the formula so ring suburbs like Hamden would get more funding. The new formula forces districts of 1,000 or less students to join with larger districts or lose their funding.
  • Michael Ross noted that we are going to have 380 new households when the new development at Mather and Dixwell opens. What kind of impact will that have? Rep. D’Agostino said it will trigger redistricting as well as adding taxes to the town pot. But a lot depends on whether some of those kids have special needs. The new development is not family housing though; the units are small, single bedroom efficiencies.

Adjournment: President Bechtel adjourned the meeting at 9:00.