2022 Letters & Endorsements

Letter to the Editor

Supports Evans

Public education must be among the top priorities for any elected official as quality public education enables greater personal economic achievement because students become more successfully employed. Erica Evans, candidate for state representative, is the obvious South Windsor choice based upon her education background, elected positions, leadership, and her community volunteerism.

Her actions and work ethic speak louder than words. Community driven, Erica became involved in Support South Windsor Schools’ (SSWS) efforts to rebuild our aged schools. As Chair of SSWS, I saw firsthand how our volunteer committee benefited from Erica's creative solutions, technology skills, and her problem solving ability. Where there was a will, Erica found a way.

During her work with SSWS over six years, Erica was active also in the South Windsor MOMS Club and was elected to the South Windsor Board of Education. Currently a mother of school age children, Erica possesses knowledge of local education as a former high school educator and now also as a South Windsor Councilwoman.

In addition to her understanding of family, public education and local issues, Erica's intelligence, collaborative approach, and passion and relentless energy to community sets her apart. Erica Evans is the perfect candidate for South Windsor.

Daria Plummer
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, November 5, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Please Vote This Year

According to the Pew Research Center, about 55%-60% of eligible voters actually voted in the last two presidential elections. It’s often less for mid-terms and other elections. It’s unfortunate that so many Americans don’t take advantage of the single most powerful right we have as citizens. That’s because — I suppose — it is not fully appreciated.

On that thought there is a potential tsunami on the horizon that should grab the attention of all of us. Currently, there are about half a dozen states endeavoring to change voting rules so their own Republican-majority legislatures would be able to reverse the result of a legitimate election and appoint their own slate of electors. We are not far from that right now.

While right-leaning voters might applaud this, we should take pause as to where this leads. If a state legislature can appoint electors as it sees fit, and therefore choose the candidate of its choice, regardless of voter preference, that means your vote doesn’t matter. It doesn’t count. Those in power stay in power with no means to change the status quo. Laws are changed.

Term limits are eliminated. Elections, as we know them, cease to exist. Ultimately, those in power have no need to care about the citizens because we hold no power over them. The power of the vote — the power of the ballot box — no longer exists.

We are not far from this in 2022. This is how authoritarian regimes are born. The only way to alter that status quo is through rebellion. While this may sound appealing to you extreme conservatives, think about a power system that has no need for any of us, including you.

Paul Bernstein
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 22, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Supporting Anwar

South Windsor, East Windsor, East Hartford, and Ellington residents are fortunate to have our former South Windsor Mayor, and present State Senator in the 3rd Senatorial District, Dr. Saud Anwar as the Democratic candidate for State Senate.

I have worked with Senator Anwar on many projects and he is dedicated and committed to the residents in this district.

He has and will continue to give us a voice in Hartford! Senator Anwar brings talks with people, listens to their ideas, and finds a way to solve problems. He has earned the respect of many leaders at the local, state, and national level.

He cares about all residents and extends himself beyond his personal comfort level to help others in need. His support for families, schools, seniors, and our youth, is outstanding. His work on crumbling foundations, the opioid crisis, the cost of insulin, cutting health care costs, the smoking/vaping crisis, standing up for a woman’s right to choose, are examples of how he cares about building healthy communities.

Vote Nov. 8 to re-elect Dr. Saud Anwar as our State Senator.

Your vote is your voice.

Andrew Paterna
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 22, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Supports Anwar

This letter is to publicly acknowledge State Senator Dr. Saud Anwar. Dr. Anwar is a tireless worker who genuinely cares about his constituents. Most importantly, he keeps his word and follows through on his promises.

I want to specifically thank Dr. Anwar for his leadership in increasing the mental health workforce to better support children and their families in Connecticut. Dr. Anwar is an exemplary public servant and we are fortunate to have him representing us.

Jack Chinsky
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 14, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Vote for Evans

South Windsor voters have an easy choice in this November’s State Representative race: Democrat Erica Evans, deserves our vote. Republican Tom Delnicki does not.

While Delnicki talks a good game, he is short on action. Just look at his voting record. Delnicki didn’t bother to vote on the most important bill in the 2022 legislative session.

The budget bill included more than $600 million in tax relief. It extended the 25-cent gas tax holiday that benefited everyone in Connecticut. It expanded funding for mental health services, and childcare. Yet, Delnicki was a “no show” on that critical vote.

Delnicki’s voting record is shameful when it comes to helping average families. He voted no on Paid Family and Medical Leave. He voted no on the $15 minimum wage. He voted no on a law that helps keep guns out of the hands of individuals who are at risk to themselves or others.

What is Delnicki doing for us in the state legislature? Not much. Let’s replace him with someone who actually works for us. Vote for Erica Evans.

Kathryn Hale
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 14, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Supports Evans

State Rep. Tom Delnicki owes South Windsor voters an apology. When one of the most important bills of the 2022 legislative session came up for approval, he wasn’t there. Delnicki was happy to show up at the September press conference with Gov. Lamont to take credit for a new air filtration grant program for our public schools. But he chose not to even vote on the budget bill that funded that program.

The legislation, which was signed by the governor, provides money for tax relief and programs to help working families, children, and seniors in South Windsor. It extends the 25-cent per gallon gasoline tax holiday, expands youth mental health services and substance-use disorder treatment programs, and helps the child care industry.

Why would anyone choose to re-elect a politician who fails South Windsor residents on such important issues?

Democrat Erica Evans is the better choice. As a former Board of Education member and current member of the Town Council, Evans has proven her leadership. She fought for new schools while keeping taxes down.

Unlike Delnicki, Evans will show up. She will fight for South Windsor’s best interest in the state Capitol. I’m voting for Evans on Nov. 8.

Dwight Johnson
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 6, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Is for Evans

For far too long, South Windsor residents have tolerated a state representative who is out of touch with our community. On Tuesday, Nov. 8, we have the opportunity to change that by electing Erica Evans as our new state representative.

As a member of the South Windsor Town Council and former member of the Board of Education, Evans has earned a reputation for listening to residents and understanding their priorities.

In her work on the Council, she focuses on education, diversity, equity, and inclusion issues, health and recreation, fiscal responsibility, infrastructure, open space and sustainability. She has led efforts to keep taxes down and yet still deliver programs and services for families and children.

Evans, a former public school teacher and mother of three, worked tirelessly on the “Support South Windsor Schools” campaign. That effort persuaded residents to approve four new elementary schools.

Nov. 8 offers voters a chance for change. I’ll be casting my ballot for Councilor Evans because I believe she understands the needs of her community and will do the hard work to truly represent South Windsor in the Connecticut Legislature.

Sandra Jeski
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, September 29, 2022

Letter to the Editor

Evans Supports Women’s Rights

I never imagined that a women’s right to choose would be taken away. But it has happened.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade is a poignant reminder that women cannot take for granted the right to determine their future. Now that there is no longer a constitutional right to an abortion, it is up to states to decide whether that right will be protected.

That is why it is critically important to elect pro-choice women to the state legislature. I am voting for Erica Evans for State Representative in South Windsor’s 14th House District, because I know she is committed to ensuring a women’s right to choose.

Evans, a mother of three understands that choosing whether and when to have children is a personal decision. It should remain free of government interference. Erica will fight to guarantee that the government can’t stand between a woman and her doctor on matters of reproductive health.

I will be voting for Evans on Nov. 8. I encourage all South Windsor voters who believe women should be allowed to make their own reproductive health decisions, to do the same.

Linda Jeski
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, September 28, 2022

2021 Letters & Endorsements

Letter to the Editor

Dems actions make difference in South Windsor

South Windsor’s Democratic leadership has accomplished amazing things in the past two years.

Holding the majority on the Town Council, Board of Education, and the Planning and Zoning Commission, Democrats have given residents two consecutive budgets with no tax increase. Sewer fees did not increase and the mill rate went down.

The grand list has grown by $3.9 million, despite the pandemic. More of our low-income elderly have extra money in their pockets because the income cutoff to qualify for a tax credit was raised. Democrats don’t just talk. They take action that makes a difference for every single person in South Windsor.

We all know that our town is a wonderful place to live. Money Magazine has affirmed that belief by naming South Windsor the 12th best place to live in entire country (2020). Let’s keep it that way. Vote Row A on Election Day.

Elizabeth Kuehnel
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 25, 2021

Letter to the Editor

South Windsor Dems deliver for residents

Society must demonstrate progress, not politics, to achieve, grow, and prosper, and in our society, especially during election cycles, we are subject to opinion and rhetoric.

Rhetoric — idiomatic speechmaking — sounds good but, without the facts, it is akin to a limp piece of lettuce.

It is far too easy to throw out that proverbial baby with the bathwater. If we indeed are to face facts, we must take the time to listen, read, and understand them.

Municipal officials are volunteers who are paid nothing for their hours of service and are subject to verbal abuse, mischaracterization, and ugly vitriol on social media posts.

Dislike of elections has risen dramatically over the years, and voters decry signage, door knocking, mailers, and anything else that might highlight positions.

Sadly, all lead to the avoidance of voting in a country that prides itself on free and democratic voting.

In South Windsor facts are clear: Democrats delivered for taxpayers and residents, with no tax increase or reduction in services for two years. Our Board of Education continually puts students and staff first for their safety during the pandemic.

Money talks in today’s economy, and actions speak louder than words. I will vote Row A: Democratic.

Daria M. PlummerPaterna
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 13, 2021

Letter to the Editor

Progress in South Windsor under Dems can be seen

Under Democratic leadership of the Town Council, Board of Education, and Planning and Zoning Commission, we have demonstrated progress you can see.

We delivered two years with: no tax increase, no mill rate increase, no increase in sewer fees, and attracted many great companies to town with no reduction in town services. We kept town hall open during the worst pandemic in 100 years.

We added $3.9 million to our tax base in 2020. We supported building four new elementary schools. We will achieve 100% renewable electrical energy in all town buildings in 2022. No other town in the state is doing these things.

We are focused on preserving open space: purchasing Porter’s Hill at Nevers Park, and 50 acres of farmland near Main Street have been saved forever.

We received national recognition for South Windsor, as we were named the 12th best place to live in America (Money Magazine, 2020).

We are focused on making South Windsor a great place to live, work, play and learn.

Vote Row A on Nov. 2 for progress you can see.

Andrew Paterna
South Windsor

The writer is the Democratic mayor of South Windsor who is running for reelection.

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 6, 2021

Letter to the Editor

South Windsor Dems offer record of positive change

South Windsor voters have a choice. They can choose Democratic candidates with a proven track record of positive change that continues to focus on progress, or candidates from the other party offering no new ideas for the town.

Democrats have held the Town Council and Board of Education majority for four years and these are some of their successes: no tax increase; successful completion of the school district three-year plan; planning and building three new elementary schools with a fourth on the way; creation of a tax stabilization fund; a smart growth strategy to drive new tax revenue bringing great American companies to town; national recognition as 12th best place to live in America (Money Magazine, 2020); renewable energy achievements; preservation of open space and farmland.

Republicans are a vote for “change.” To what? A reduction in services and regressive policies that prevent progress?

Keeping Democrats in the majority just makes sense to continue moving South Windsor forward. Vote Row A on Nov. 2.

Linda Jeski
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, October 5, 2021

Letter to the Editor

South Windsor Dems are focused on data-driven decisions

As South Windsor Democrats we are focused on data-driven decisions that bring growth, prosperity, and solutions to improve our community.

Under Democratic majority leadership we have made progress you can see. Residents have enjoyed two straight years of no municipal tax, mill rate, or sewer usage fee increase — all without reduction to town services. We have set high education standards and are about to break ground on our fourth new elementary school.

We’ve driven smart growth, attracting great companies into the town, which delivers incremental revenue to keep taxes in line.

Under Democratic majority leadership we’ve added $3.9 million to our grand list, created a tax stabilization fund, will achieve our goal of 100% renewable energy on all town buildings by 2023, while being committed to preservation of open space and 50 acres of farmland.

These accomplishments have resulted in our town being nationally recognized (MONEY Magazine, 12th best place to live), and our Democratic team is determined to continue to make South Windsor a great place to live, work, play, and learn.

On Nov. 2, a vote for me and my colleagues on Row A (top row) will assure that we continue this success and progress.

Damian Humphrey
South Windsor
The writer is a Democratic candidate for selectman.

Published in the Journal Inquirer, September 23, 2021

Letter to the Editor

Dems are demonstrating good leadership

I am a long-time South Windsor resident and I know what good leadership looks like. Democratic leadership in South Windsor has made the town a better place to live for me and for all residents.

Under Democratic leadership on the Town Council, we haven’t had a tax increase in two years. There’s been no mill rate increase and no increase in the sewer usage fee. All of this has been done without reducing services for residents.

The Democrat-led Board of Education has helped prepare our kids for the future by making sure the school system has an excellent curriculum. We also have three new state-of-the-art elementary schools, with a fourth scheduled to be completed in 2023.

In addition, Democrats have helped seniors by increasing the tax credit.

So it makes sense to keep Democrats in charge. They make good decisions for the town and have proven they are great leaders. I’ll be voting Row A for all the Democratic candidates. I’m asking other voters to do the same.

Dwight Johnson
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, September 21, 2021

Letter to the Editor

A simple act of kindness

This November 2nd, there will be municipal elections involving – in some cases – dozens of candidates campaigning for our various Boards, Councils, Commissions and more.

The candidates are investing their time, effort and personal funds for the privilege and opportunity to participate in our democratic process. With very few exceptions, these elected positions are voluntary. The reward is giving back to the community.

Many candidates will be campaigning tirelessly to get themselves known so voters can make educated decisions about who to vote for.

One of the best known and effective forms of campaigning is “door knocking.” While this can be perceived as a nuisance to some – maybe many – I am hopeful that residents will embrace ALL candidates as they walk our streets looking to meet and greet.

Given limited budgets, door knocking is the best way for candidates to articulate their views and platform, and address our issues and concerns.

I am making the commitment to receive any and all candidates with courtesy and respect. I hope all who read this will join me.

Paul Bernstein
South Windsor

Published in the Journal Inquirer, September 9, 2021