Saturday, January 05, 2013

Letter to the Editor: Mayor: Don't Play Politics on Riverfront

All letters to the editor are published as a courtesy to readers, and opinions expressed/ claims made may or may not be shared by Middletown Insider editors. Salafia was named on the list of most influential Middletown women of 2012:

MI Editors Note: Per charter, all commissions and committees must be created by ordinance. To be clear, a mayor can seek and take advice from anyone, be it an individual or a group of people. A mayor then could therefore form a group that advises him and him alone. The mayor can't form a Riverfront Advisory Task Force i.e. a Committee that has any real duties; only the Common Council can create such an entity. The mayor would then appoint its membership and the Council would then vote to confirm those appointments. Unless this process has been followed, this "task force" is worth little to nothing. Which raises the very same question about the "Mayor's Bi-partisan Task Force on Government Reorganization" or, as it has been referred-to, the "Blue-ribbon Commission."
Dear Editor,
     My letter is in response to the article published by the Hartford Courant on January 2, 2013 announcing that Mayor Drew would put together a 7 member task force to make recommendations about River Front Zoning. The article is here:
     The first time I had heard that the Mayor was considering such a committee was from this article. As a Planning and Zoning Commissioner, I should have been made aware of this by well before the announcement. By charter, there is already an existing Harbor Review Committee and the question as to why a second "task force" or essentially a committee is needed should  be questioned.
     Immediately after reading the Courant article, I submitted my name to the Mayor and asked to be considered for  the committee as a representative from the P&Z Commission. I believe my training in  architecture, planning, historic preservation, and sustainability could be useful.Because I work in the planning and architecture field for a living, I  was volunteering my skills as a professional out of my dedication to Middletown.  I only received an answer 3 days later ,after a second request, from the mayor's assistant that my request was received and being reviewed.
     This was all ruse. The Mayor had already chosen the committee by the time the Courant published the article asking for volunteers. 
      The problem I have is not that I was not considered, it is more so none of my republican colleagues on P&Z, who have over 30 years combined experience on P&Z were not chosen - a wealth of knowledge that is being wasted.  Equally as troubling is that the only minority representation on the whole 7 person committee is a single council member.
     Furthermore, Mayor Drew neglected to choose to add the Harbor Master, any representatives from Harbor Improvement committee, Design Review and Historic Preservation, the Conservation Commission, and most importantly the public.
     As commissioner, and a taxpaying citizen of Middletown, I am disappointed  that the Mayor is once again playing politics when choosing committee members to make crucial decisions about Middletown. 
     When people go to the City of Middletown website, there is no indication of what committees are open. When I have asked the Council Clerk for a list of open committee seats, I have only been given the run around. I have asked to be apart of other committees, only to receive no answer to my request. Despite this Mayor's mandate for evening meetings, committees regularly meet during work day hours and not always at public locations.  This is  disturbing because the transparency of such committees is then an illusion because they  are purposely inconvenient to the majority of full-time working citizens who are entitled  to access to their government.
      If this Mayor, and the Democratic majority keep choosing the same people to make decisions, and acquiesce to the same desires of those chosen,  we as citizens will only be burdened with the same mediocre results that stagnate us as a community.

Respectfully submitted,

Molly Salafia, Assoc. AIA, LEED GA,
 Middletown Citizen & also
P&Z Commissioner, (R)


  1. Well said! So much talent untapped!

  2. more smoke and mirrors! good for you for speaking up!

  3. Ahem, Molly. Will all due respect you have openly ridiculed the Mayor and his party for years. You take time to draw cartoons in an attempt to belittle. You are clearly a contributor to the Middletown Insider. A blog that exaggerates issues from the local Democratic party and stays quite when a local Republican gets involved in something the MI wouldn't approve of.

    With that on your shoulders you expect the Mayor and his party to be FRIENDLY to you? Get real! You may have great credentials but if you are nasty towards your boss chances are he isn't going to assign you projects that you may be interested in.

  4. Who cares! The site is bold and different!

  5. I'm sure Molly cares now that she can see first hand how the melodrama can affect the real world.

  6. Basically Molly is supposed to kiss ass like all you guys and then get appointed to a volunteeer posistion? Come on? I love how the non-Profits in town make tons of money on OUR dime, and nobody says anything.. "It's for the sick or the kids or..." Let's get real! They are sucking us dry while their CEOs have hand picked salaries and high pent house offices. Man get a life! - Lost it Tibet

  7. Molly- not your loss its their loss! Never stop criticizing your government or speaking up about wrong doing! The Council voted to table the creation of the committee last night because "questions" as had been raised! The public needs more input- you were right! All politics-

  8. Darrel Lucas get a life!

  9. Anon 8:06 it's called political retaliation


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