NORWALK, Conn. – This is a press release, presented in the format in which it was sent:
Norwalk…Norwalk’s six term Democratic state representative, Bruce V. Morris, overcoming a recent cancer diagnosis that threatened to end his mayoral campaign, today, vowed to take his campaign to the Democratic primaries to unseat Mayor Harry Rilling. Rilling, who has been Norwalk’s mayor since 2013, recently won the city’s Democratic Party’s endorsement, a political endorsement, Morris said, that he did not expect to win, given his active leadership style and willingness to challenge party leadership when necessary.
“The outcome was no surprise and I was prepared for it, given the party politics involved,” said Morris. “That’s why we’ve been working hard and have already gathered most of the signatures we need to bring my candidacy to the people.” Morris needs 942 signatures to petition for the primary, which would be held on September 12.
Morris added that the good news from his physicians that he is now cancer free has been a significant boost for him and his family, who has encouraged him to continue with his campaign.
Repeated encouragement from Norwalk’s neighborhood groups, business community and other citizens from Norwalk’s broad, diverse population, Morris said, has been the chief impetus for his run, a move, he added, that he has been contemplating for several years.
Additionally, he said, leading the city will allow him to respond to the urgent need for Norwalk to make more effective, strategic investments in the city’s long term economic future, and to more effectively engage the city’s strong neighborhood and social resources to bridge the gaps of Norwalk’s widening social and economic disparity. Morris called his candidacy a natural extension of the work he has performed for his home town his entire adult life and a journey whose time has come.
“My goal is to create a better quality of life for Norwalk’s citizens – all of Norwalk’s citizens – to bridge the gaps by leveraging our greatest assets – our people, our local businesses, our neighborhoods, schools and organizations. Working together, empowering the weakest and the strongest among us, we will achieve greater economic security for our city and build a safer, stronger, prouder Norwalk for years to come.”
Morris pointed out that Norwalk was among the very few major cities that does not include a “watchdog department” that specifically ensures that home-town based small, minority and women owned businesses are given real opportunities in local development projects and profitable ventures that enhance the city.
“That is going to change in a Morris administration,” he said. “It means jobs, income growth and local economic stability. And with economic stability comes long term growth.”
Morris has long been active in public service in Norwalk. For nearly 40 years he has worked with leaders from Norwalk’s business, school, neighborhood and social services communities. He is an associate minister of Macedonia Church, a member of the Norwalk NAACP and Interdenominational Ministers Fellowship of Norwalk. Formerly, he served as a Human Relations Officer with Norwalk schools, a member of the Macedonia AIDS Ministry and Cornerstone Community Development Corporation, chairperson of the board of directors for Norwalk Community Health Center, chair of the Public Services Division of United Way of Norwalk and Wilton, president of the Norwalk Clergy Association and board member of the George Washington Carver Center.
Morris is Deputy House Speaker in Connecticut’s General Assembly, in addition to many other legislative leadership positions he has held, and is an important member of the legislature’s Education, Judiciary, Finance, Human Services and Legislative Management Committees. Morris’ years as a state legislator has allowed him to sponsor and work to ensure passage of transformative legislation that has aided Norwalk and the state. Examples include laws that:
- Provide additional funding for multi-family affordable housing, foreclosure-prevention programs and the Norwalk school system
- Provide funding for the Earned Income Tax Credit – as a result, 1,623 people in his district receive the credit from Connecticut
- Require the collection of DNA evidence from convicted felons upon a subsequent felony arrest.
- Provide body cameras for law enforcement officers throughout Connecticut, increased police training and the appointment of special prosecutors in cases where there is a death that involves an officer and the use of physical force
- Expand the State Small Business Set-Aside program to include municipal projects funded by the state, for example school construction. Small, women and minority businesses are provided greater opportunity to grow and participate in our economy.
- Provide an Angel Investor credit to capitalize startup businesses, while giving individual investors 25% tax credit up to $250,000.
- Provide an intentional set of literacy reforms (CK3LI) that have significantly narrowed the achievement gap in reading.
Morris added, “This election is about empowering all the citizens of Norwalk. My candidacy will ensure that all members of our community are represented in the process. My election will restore transparency and civility to Norwalk’s local government, opportunities for all our citizens, and help our residents, families and local businesses achieve greater economic security and a better quality of life.”
This press release was posted as a public service. A press release is a written announcement submitted to news organizations to publicize an event or activity, a milestone or a point of view. NancyOnNorwalk has not researched the assertions made and takes no responsibility for the content.