I have spent my entire life in public service to our city and country, but there has been no greater honor than being your Mayor. It has been a privilege that Norwalk voters have put their trust in me to lead our city forward. Being Mayor isn’t easy and is a commitment I take very seriously. There is no such thing as a perfect Mayor or a perfect decision, but I love the job, I am energetic and passionate, and I am proud of what we’ve accomplished together.
Since first taking office in 2013, we have made investing in education and school infrastructure a top priority. These historic investments in Norwalk schools, students, and families are paying off. We are building new schools and renovating existing spaces. Norwalk Public Schools are again ranked first on the state education report card, significantly outperforming the state average.
The Grand List has grown by $2.5 billion since I have been in office. We’ve worked hard to shift the tax burden off of working families. The SoNo Collection just opened and will be a go-to regional destination for decades and will provide millions of dollars in new tax revenue. All across Norwalk, new businesses are opening, new good-paying jobs are becoming available, and new housing options are being constructed. People are investing in our community as never before. They are moving their businesses here, they are moving their families here, and they are making Norwalk their home.
We have worked hard to make our community safer for everyone. We have improved 911 response times by 40 percent, added additional School Resource Officers, and reduced serious crime in every neighborhood. We continue to provide the tools necessary to combat the growing opioid crisis that affects too many families. I believe firmly that our first responders are the cornerstones of our great city.
We have invested millions into services and infrastructure that were neglected for far too many years. Through strong financial management, we have kept taxes and spending under control. We have healthy cash reserves and superb credit ratings that allow us to invest wisely. This last year, we were able to lower the mill rate, and in turn, lower taxes for most single-family homeowners in Norwalk.
We have done a lot over the last six years. If I am fortunate enough to be your Mayor for another two years, there are a few more things we’d like to get accomplished.
- We will expand and renovate the Library to become a model for all public libraries in the country. It would provide additional public spaces that will be a jewel of the area and an anchor of future economic development.
- We will continue investing in our school operations and facilities because the future leaders of tomorrow are in Norwalk schools today. We will open new state-of-the-art schools and keep our classroom sizes reasonable to ensure all students can be successful.
- We will continue to invest in technology, and move the city’s permitting process online to make things more convenient for residents and business investors. The system will be streamlined to incorporate all the new zoning changes we are undertaking and will be consistent with our 10-year strategic plan – the Plan of Conservation and Development.
- We will continue smart development in the Urban Core and near train stations to increase employment opportunities and reduce tax burdens on homeowners. We will invest in a new Small Business and Main Street Program to help support our local businesses and enhance residential quality of life.
- We will further develop our new community services department to improve services and programs for youth, seniors, and veterans. Norwalk’s diversity is one of our greatest strengths and we will work hard to ensure that no one falls through the cracks.
I work for you – the residents of our great city. Some believe Norwalk is on a downward spiral, and that there is nothing good happening here. I could not disagree more. From reducing crime to providing jobs and a strong financial outlook to a great school system – Norwalk is a city on the rise.
I do not feel I’m entitled to your vote. Each day I walk into city hall I have to earn your trust, your confidence, and your respect. I wake up every day believing in Norwalk and the progress we have made together. With your support, we can keep the momentum going. Therefore, I humbly ask for your continued support on November 5.