NORWALK, Conn. — Some Norwalk political notes for you:
- First Taxing District looking for a new Commissioner, deadline is today
- Penn-Williams promises more protest
- Melendez wanted to oust Rilling, for fun
Filling a need
There’s an opening on the First Taxing District Board of Commissioners due to the death of Marija Bryant, who had been serving as chairwoman.
Under the City’s charter, the remaining Commissioners have 60 days to choose a replacement, First Taxing District Board of Commissioners Chairwoman Elsa Peterson Obuchowski said at Monday’s Democratic Town Committee meeting. But the Commissioners don’t want to run out the clock, so anyone who is interested is asked to submit a letter of intent by 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.
If you’re registered Democrat and you voted at Tracey Elementary School or St. Mary’s Church, you’re eligible.
“The Commissioners form an elected Board of Officers which oversee all functions of the First District Water Department (FDWD),” The FDWD states on its website. “The Commissioners meet monthly to set policy, establish and approve budgets and through the General Manager, direct all of the employees of the FDWD. The Commissioners function in part time positions.”
“Commissioners receive a modest stipend and are eligible for certain other benefits,” Obuchowski wrote. Email [email protected].
‘I’m going to call New York’
No, the NAACP did not descend upon Norwalk City Hall on Tuesday; although Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting was cancelled due to weather, Norwalk Branch NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) President Brenda Penn-Williams wasn’t planning on busloads of protestors anyway.
“It’s Christmas-time,” she said Monday. “I don’t want to remove folks from their cities.”
Penn-Williams had sent out an email inviting locals to the meeting.
On Nov. 19, Penn-Williams and Scot Esdaile, President of the NAACP Connecticut State Conference, packed the City Hall community room with protestors, demanding that Board of Education member Mike Barbis resign due to an email he wrote in June that included the phrase “Blacks f—Latinos.” Barbis refuses to resign.
Penn-Williams said she’s thinking she’ll put out a call for protestors in January or February, but that depends on the weather.
“We are going to have some more buses, but I’m gonna invite New York,” she said. “I’m not playing. We’re gonna keep it up.”
Going away present?
No, the Board of Education cannot legally remove one of its members. But the Common Council could vote to remove the Mayor, Democratic Town Committee Vice Chairwoman Eloisa Melendez said in November.
Melendez made note of that the day before Mayor Harry Rilling was inaugurated for a fourth term, and Melendez’ own six years in City government came to an end.
“I asked him if he would let me do that tonight so that he could be sworn in again tomorrow, just for fun,” she said, then mimicking her reaction to his reply, “I’ve been a Council member for six years and it’s done tomorrow. ‘I can’t have some fun, Mayor? C’mon.’”
On Wednesday, she remarked in a comment, “It is crazy that there is a process to remove some elected officials from office but not others.”
This story was edited at 8:39 p.m. to add information to the Melendez segment; a correction was made at 12:16 a.m. Friday to show that First Taxing District Commissioners receive a stipend.