Promises Matter
When we talk about the upcoming election, what do we mean when we say "Promises Matter"?

A promise is a commitment to do something or not do something. It is easy to make promises during the campaign season, but it is far more difficult to keep them. Republicans have been very vocal about their goals and have been successful in achieving them.  On the contrary and just recently, the IPN made the following promise:   "As Selectmen you can count on us to say what we mean, and do what we say." 1

Let's look back two years and check the record:

2009 Elections Promises by the IPN

  2009 Promise: Advocate for restoring educational excellence3
  Result: IPN expressed harsh criticism for other boards questioning the Board of Education on issues which affect the entire town
Did you know the Republican majority advocated for Educational Assistants, less school Administrators, and passing the 2011-12 budget to the voters as presented by the BOE?


  2009 Promise: Encourage public participation3
  Result: IPN Board of Education chairman removes second public participation from their agendas.
Did you know the Republican led Legislative Council added a second public participation to their meetings in order to allow the Public to address any issue?


  2009 Promise: Smart land acquisition for open space3
  Result: Disappeared from 2011 platform.  IPN Legislative Council members make motions to remove open space from budget.
Did you know the Republicans researched adding more open space purchases because of the value of open space - more connected greenways and less residential development?


 
2009 Promise: Lessen the reliance on property taxes3
  Result: Disappeared from 2011 platform.  
Did you know the First Selectman along with the Legislative Council is meeting with the Director of Economic Development to better understand how Newtown is recruiting businesses to our Town in order to attain a healthier balance between home owners and businesses.  Did you know the Board of Finance, Board of Selectman and the Legislative Council all endorsed tax incentives to bring Advanced Fusion Systems to Newtown?


  2009 Promise: True fiscal responsibility3
  Result: Disappeared from 2011 platform.  IPN advocates raiding the general fund which risks a debt downgrade and costs taxpayers millions.
Did you know Republicans revisited both the Town Fund Balance (our Savings Account) Policy and the Town Debt Policy to ensure these policies are still relevant and current with the goal of ensuring our current solid financial standing.


  2009 Promise: Advocates zero-based budgeting3
  Result: Disappeared from 2011 platform and never brought up after 2009 election.  The current IPN Selectman voted to approve the 2009-10 selectman's budget, voted in favor of each line item and made the final motion to approve. Shortly thereafter, he went on to claim there was "padding" in the same selectman's budget at the public participation portion of a Legislative Council budget hearing on April 7, 2010.  Their new tagline is "Track, Score and Report" and cut 5% from the Budget.
Did you know the Republicans, in developing the 2009-10 budget, saved the taxpayers $2.3 Million in commodity based savings having no impact on services?


  2009 Promise: Meaningful revenue development and create a strong organization to oversee development of business issues at Fairfield Hills3
  Result: Goal to abolish Fairfield Hills ordinance despite the fact ordinances are the responsibility of the Legislative Council.  During the last term, IPN Legislative Council members motion to reduce funding of the Economic Development Commission by $92,000.  IPN successful in delaying plans, costing the Town in excess of $600,0005.  Since last term, goal changed to improve plan; however, no plan put forward by IPN in the last two years.
Did you know if the Fairfield Hills ordinance is abolished, leases have to be auctioned off and the Town will lose all control of what is built and who builds at Fairfield Hills?  Did you know Republicans promised to commission a review of the Fairfield Hills vision which has just been completed (http://www.newtown-ct.gov/Public_Documents/NewtownCT_BBoard/032D917D-000F8513)?


  2009 Promise: IPN pledges to broadcast public meetings3
  Result: Disappeared from IPN 2011 platform.  Most sensitive IPN led BOE public meetings concerning the owner/operators and vote on contract are not recorded - despite an availability of a facility which could record.
Did you know First Selectman Pat Llodra had the Town website updated to incorporate email updates for everything from Road and Bridge Construction to Park and Recreation Activities?  Did you know the Town website also has video streaming available for Town meetings?

  2009 Promise: Advocates for residents to be able to sign up for email notifications from the Town3
  Result: IPN Chairman Bruce Walczak, a 2011 District 2 Council candidate, cites Freedom of Information Act and personal "business purposes" as justification of his request for Town collected email addresses 
Did you know First Selectman Pat Llodra refused the request?

  Promise: Budget bifurcation, advisory questions through charter revision4
  Result: IPN claims the process to be tainted when charter commission only endorses advisory questions.  IPN Council Member Kevin Fitzgerald advocates, in a bifurcated budget situation, to nullify all voter responses if one side of budget fails.
Did you know the Republicans on the Legislative Council followed through with having a charter revision process because the voters asked for it?

What do Newtown Republicans Think?

It’s simple. Compare the past records and decide who is more likely to keep their promises.  Newtown Republicans promised to support education, be fiscally prudent, manage costs, look for cost efficiencies, maintain and improve our financial standing and listen to the voters.  We removed $2.3 million in overstated commodity costs in the 2009-10 budget. We commissioned a study which has just been completed to review overhead costs for improved efficiency and transparency between the town and school departments.  We commissioned a charter revision process because many townspeople asked for a review on the specific issue of advisory questions and bifurcation of the budget. We commissioned a group of citizens to review the Fairfield Hills vision and this review has just been completed.  We, once again, improved the financial standing of the Town due to the diligence of our Board of Finance and Legislative Council members.  We reviewed and updated both our Town Debt and Fund Balance policies to ensure they were up to date, current and consistent with our goal of attaining the best possible financial position.  Over and over again, we listened to the Townspeople and responded - we supported the Owner/Operators, we supported the Educational Assistants and we supported asking questions to get a better understanding.

IPN promised to represent the Town. Where were they when the citizens of Newtown overwhelmingly pleaded for fair and equal consideration on behalf of the Owner/Operators?  They were silent.  When the Charter Review Commission's findings were inconsistent with IPN's goals, they cried, "Foul!"  When interested Newtown citizens asked the IPN to give them details about their 5% reduction plan, their response was "Please Stay Tuned"2.

We have done what we promised.  We said we would listen and we did.  We don't just "talk the talk", Newtown Republicans "walk the walk".  We represent and listen to all Newtowners.